When talking about love, money, and life in general, abundance is a word that gets tossed around a lot these days. It is true that we all have the ability to share in abundance once we get out of our own way, but the concept is broad and lacks detail. When the need is to hone in on specific personal changes necessary for moving forward in life, it's all in the specifics.
Playing With Energy
There is also a lot of talk about the "law of attraction:" like attracting like. This is a powerful concept. If I exist in lack, it is lack I magnetize to me. As everything is comprised of energy, how I use or play with energy determines what will come back to me. So the question is, what kind of attraction are we putting out there? What is the inner story? What is the running theme that prevents us from attaining what we want? Why for some is it seemingly easier to attract an abundance of love, money, and health; where for others only stumbling blocks appear?
The Inner Story
I have been asking myself these questions, going deeper to find the answers that have been recently surfacing almost effortlessly. What is my inner story? What have I absorbed through my parents and their imprint on my psyche? How comfortable am I with the concept of getting what I feel I need for a more complete life, even knowing that my life is complete as it is? What are the illusions around what I perceive as abundance and what really is abundance? How am I defining my own personal paradigms by realizing that life is infinitely richer as I turn away from what society determines as the ideal? What is truly ideal for me?
Concept and Metaphor
One of the most powerful things that I am beginning to understand is the concept and metaphor associated with "investment." If more money is going out than coming in, for example, what does this have to do with investment or the lack thereof? Are we investing our time efficiently if we are not getting a commensurate return? What if we apply this concept to love?
Many of our relationships are based on giving more than we receive, which eventually drains our investment in the time we spend giving to ourselves. The law of balance implies that we should at least receive that which is equal to what we give and spend. I find, for example, that I need an equal amount of time in meditation or silence as I do communing with others, which allows me the equanimity I need to be my optimum self.
One Hundred Percent
When looking at "investment," I can clearly feel when I am not fully invested. Am I involved 100% in what I am doing? Am I wishing for something else while I'm doing what I'm doing? Am I completely invested in where I live, the work I do, the people surrounding me? By fully committing to my choices, I become invested and much more likely to get a fulfilling return. This is the law of attraction: committed energy attracts energy of like kind.
Commitment and investment require another essential element, which is discernment. Discernment requires that we are clear about who we are, who we are not, what makes us tick and why, and where our vulnerabilities lie. With the ability to discern, we can then be clear that our choices are healthy ones, which then empowers our investment.
When we instinctively feel that what we are doing is not the correct path regardless of what is expected of us, our inner protective mechanism will subconsciously prevent a full investment. We ultimately invest where we find our joy, our passion, our calling. When we are in this place, the commitment we invest becomes a true and undeniable pleasure.
Over the last several years I have made a commitment to invest in a more healthful way to think about all of my relationships. Where money is concerned I am noticing where my stumbling blocks are, such as when I see lack rather than prospects, observing how I handle dealing with debts, and noticing when I judge myself for past unformed and un-informed choices. As I observe my feelings around these subjects, anxiety begins to wane, enabling me to find practical solutions. This has been the key to becoming more mature, responsible, and more invested in making my money issues work for me.
Regarding personal relationships, it is a similar process. Noticing where I am blinded by externals, how my ideas about loyalty have sometimes kept me in unhealthy situations, and what energies I have allowed next to me that are draining and unproductive have helped me create a healthier and more nurturing investment when it comes to the people with whom I choose to have around.
The Oxygen Mask
The most fundamental aspect of investment is taking care of ourselves so that we can then do our best with and for others. Think of how we are instructed on airplanes to, in case of emergency, put the oxygen mask on ourselves first before putting it on a child. How can I help another if I myself cannot breathe?
A Life Worth Living
When we feel better about ourselves and our choices, we are better able to affect positive changes in our environment. When we find and follow healthful habits that include constructive and soulful behavior based on personal investigation, we give ourselves the gift of a fully authentic life. When we recognize that this produces results that define the true meaning of success, we are finally rooted in the process of making our most important investment, which is to live a life that is truly worth living.