• Steve Pavlina’s Answer to Scarcity – How to Turn Things Around Financially

    When I heard Steve Pavlina’s podcast ‘Overcoming Scarity’ I knew I had to share it here. I’ll make a summary of the critical points below, but you’ll get so much more from listening to the actual podcast episode – you’ll hear evidence of how a counter-intuitive approach to scarcity absolutely turned Steve’s life around.

    This week I had so much fun trying out some photography. I combined a photo I took of a philodendron leaf with some of my printmaking textures. I worked on it in the Procreate app on the iPad and completed it in Photoshop.


    When you are broke or struggling financially, the natural temptation is to focus on your own needs, thinking that you have to get something going for yourself before you can contribute. Instead, Steve says, the answer is to focus on enjoying life more and especially to contributing more.

    Neediness and lack are very uninspiring to people. People won’t naturally want to help you or to make a contribution to your life, but when you reach outside of that and contribute to other people’s lives it makes a huge difference.

    Steve believes it’s much better, mindset-wise, to focus on making a contribution for/to other people and the reason it works is that it invites all sorts of help into your life. He goes on to explain that neediness and lack are very uninspiring to people. People won’t naturally want to help you or to make a contribution to your life, but when you reach outside of that and contribute to other people’s lives it makes a huge difference.
    A massive positive flow came into Steve’s life when he adopted a contributor mindset, and from that came abundance. His advice: “If you are in that mindset right now – that mindset of neediness and focusing too much on trying to get for yourself because you think you’ve got to crawl your way out of this pit – realise that mindset is what’s keeping you in the pit. Realise that is the trap itself, and if you stay in that trap it’s not going to get any better. Maybe it’s time to branch out and find some small way to help other people.”

    Steve Pavlina Podcast Episode 19 Overcoming Scarcity on iTunes
    Or listen to it via video on his site.
    www.stevepavlina.com

  • A Mindfulness Tool for Unwanted Thoughts

    Today I would like to share a tool I learned years ago when I was struggling with anxiety. It can be an extremely effective tool with practice, even though on the surface it seems very simplistic. I think I originally learned it from the spiritual teacher Jack Kornfield.

    My creation this week uses a mix of media. I created the bird by lino-cutting. I then took it into Photoshop and completed the composition using a combination of drawing and photography. Copyright Bren Michelle 2017.

    When you first become aware of a thought that is unwanted or unhelpful, imagine you are on a bus. Ask yourself if you are happy with the direction the thought is going in. The bus is a metaphor for the thought. Is this a bus you want to be on? Is it taking you somewhere you would like to go? The final destination may be somewhere very unpleasant and difficult to get back from.

    Is this a bus you want to be on? Is it taking you somewhere you would like to go? The final destination may be somewhere very unpleasant and difficult to get back from.

    If the thought is unhealthy, make the decision to get off the bus. When I do this I visualise pressing the button, hearing the buzzer it triggers and feeling the bus slow to a halt. I step off the bus and into the warmth of the sun.
    It helps to have a place to go immediately; I like to think of three things that I’m grateful for (new things each time) so that my brain does not default back to the unhelpful thought. If gratitude practice doesn’t appeal to you, choose something that you like to think about. A healthy problem for the brain to work on is an ideal distraction – what your next art piece will be, what to have for dinner, what to do on the weekend etc – anything that can engage the brain long enough to change course.
    It takes quite a lot of practice but can be powerful – especially when adapted to suit yourself. Allow yourself to be curious because some thoughts need to be investigated or explored (and some very important thoughts make us uncomfortable), but become an expert at recognising when it is a good time to get off the bus. With time, just pressing the buzzer may be enough to switch the thought off.
    This tool can be a good one to teach kids too. I hope that is helpful. Good luck!