Step 4: Cultivating Gratitude and Joy; Letting Go of Scarcity and Fear of the Dark

We live in a scarcity “never enough” culture. Not only do we struggle with not feeling “enough” ourselves, we often feel like we don’t have enough. This could be money, material items, jobs, clients, time, etc. This is a fear based model and it is making us sick.

This often strikes me as a business owner. If I have a slow week or even a slow month scarcity will start to creep in. It often brings in it’s friend shame to make me question myself and my worth. I’ll find myself wondering if I’m doing good enough work and catastrophizing what will happen if it doesn’t pick back up. I’ll start fantasizing about having to slash my household budget or get a job part-time as a barista. I’ll picture having to sell one of our vehicles and moving into an apartment that is too small for our family.

It sounds ridiculous when I say it aloud and the rational part of my brain knows this isn’t going to happen. But never the less the fantasy pops up. I wish this tendency was just around my business, but it’s not. I’ve had the same about our house burning down, the kids never having friends, etc, etc.

The counter to scarcity and fear of the dark (or the unknown) is to start practicing gratitude, which goes hand and hand with experiencing joy. Gratitude is a practice and something that has been highly associated with positive emotional outcomes. Sometimes the fear will pop up during a moment of joy or gratitude. Speaking these fears to someone trustworthy will quickly help them to dissipate and get you connected back to the present and to joy.

It’s not that bad things are never going to happen to you, but many times we create bad scenarios that never actually happen. If we can stay present it gives us more opportunities to influence a situation and allows for more flexible thinking if things change along the way.

If you are having a hard time letting go of the fear it may be helpful to seek some additional support in the way of a coach or counselor.