Monday, September 10, 2012

scarcity, abundance and quelling the voracious wants

this week many of my friends will be heading up to the woods of new hampshire to attend squam art workshops.  since first attending this magical gathering in 2009, i have made an annual trip to one of the retreats in new hampshire or the outer banks.  (see some of the magic here, here, here and here.)  i can just feel their anticipation of the hugs, laughter, long talks on the dock, art, ice cream, yoga, music and love. 

i so want to be there.  i even cried a little last night thinking about all that i will miss.

but i made a choice a few months ago that in order to leave my job, some things i enjoy would need to be cut postponed.  (interestingly, the decision to leave my job and my paycheck was based on the fact that it just cost too much, and i consider it to be my first and best mindful decision about value.)  the list of go-withouts is long.  until this last week, it hasn't been that bad and i've considered being frugal graceful with my money a fun challenge, totally doable and even rewarding. 

two things changed that:  the nearness of squam and the freaking deluge of fall catalogs arriving daily in my postbox.  autumn is my favorite time to shop.  i love boots and sweaters and coats and luscious items for my winter nest.  i am in serious want mode.  acquiring these things is evidence that i am not poor.  but this year i will go without.  and i have fallen so far down the scarcity rabbit hole that i feel impoverished, lacking, less than. 

that could not be farther from the truth.  i know that i have an abundant life, that i am rich in spirit and love and beauty.  i know that i don't have to worry about my bills being paid or a roof over my head.  i know i am spoiled.  and i feel entitled to being spoiled because i have known many times in my life when i had to scrounge for seventy-five cents in order to ride the bus to work (sometimes i had to walk) and when i had to feed myself and my child three-for-a-dollar-bean-and-potato burritos for days on end and when i had to carry my sleeping girl and my bookbags a mile from the bus stop to our home in a not-so-safe neighborhood on cold dark nights.  i get poverty.

and i also get that i remain in a poverty mindset.  that just using words like spoiled and entitled indicate a belief that if i am not that (spoiled and entitled), then i am by default impoverished.

i'm working on it, trying to find the middle ground, the balance, the equanimity between scarcity and abundance.  i've increased my awareness of how i waste money on things i don't need and really don't want.  i want it to not be about money, but money and having and acquisition keep coming up as the central themes. 

so today i am working on quelling the voracious wants.  i do this by sitting in the gorgeous sunshine, taking slow deep breaths of precious clean air, feeding myself with truly nourishing foods, reading one of the books in our ridiculously abundant library (of many unread books), using what i already have, loving my family, wishing my friends a truly beautiful time at squam and recognizing how truly lucky i am in this life.

this prosperity series on intuitive bridge is also nourishing me.

i'm interested in how you are graceful with your money and any advice you have on quelling the wants and living an abundant life.