Who pops into your head when you hear the words “abundance mentality?”

I have, blessedly, many generous people in my life, but in particular two people zip into mind. One is a former colleague who passed away suddenly one September. BK was a bear-size of a man, with a soft smile, quiet demeanor and Harvard degree under his belt. One of the company’s most successful performers, in his world, there was always room to share the success while his shoulders carried the burden of failures. He is missed. 

The other is MGM. She and our friends know I’m not talking about the movie magnates. I’m talking about someone who, when she sees a need that she has the ability to fill, steps right up without a second thought, and does.

I wish I could be like that. I debate, I weigh outcomes, I wonder if my action will be interpreted correctly or as intrusive. I think a thing through until it couldn’t be analyzed any further by a brighter mind than mine. Then, perhaps, I’ll act.

How do we become like MGM? What things do we practice daily in life that will have that kind of generosity become second nature for us?

From knowing her and observations of the other abundant-minded folks in my life, I think it comes from being centered in who you are.

“Know thyself.”

The Bible has thirty-four verses connected to this phrase. The internet will throw a dozen more at you. It’s a good starting place, though. Know who you are, what you stand for, what you won’t stand for, and wavering from your path becomes difficult.

Start your day with grace.

Ephesians 2:8-9, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.” It took a long time for this to make sense in my mind. When it finally took hold, it was with the jolt of a thunderbolt. The Artist’s Way (TAW) workshop starts you with writing long-hand morning pages—your rambling first-thing-when-you-wake-up thoughts. I did them religiously the first time I did TAW and this time until week ten of the class. For me, I’d rather start the day reading my Bible and putting my focus in the right place: not on my life, but on the gifts and grace of life.

Surround yourself with the best people.

Another part of TAW talks about purging negative people from your life. Maybe I’ve been practicing this so well since the first time I did the class that it came as a shock to read it this time. Really? What grown up doesn’t automatically shy from the negative? Of course, we can be stuck working with these people, so then what comes into play is coping while not letting them suck the life out of you. Titus 3:10 states it clearly: “As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, having nothing more to do with him…” Go, Titus.

Embrace joy.

I hit the motherlode when I searched www.BibleHub.net for “joy.” Over four hundred occurrences. Wow. Had I looked for this word during my struggling years (oh, wait, I still struggle!), maybe I’d have caught on sooner. James 1:2, “Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” 

Maybe this self-centering truly is the key to conveying abundance to others. You know yourself, so whether or not your actions are misinterpreted is not as important as acting from the heart. Starting your day with grace, whatever that means to you, grants you a focus outside of self. Being careful who you allow in your life enables you to invite in and keep the best influences possible—people who lift you up simply by being around. And embracing happiness when you meet a joy-filled person, they draw you in, give your life a burst of enthusiasm, and teach you, by example, how to share the glee you have inside both when it fills you with delight and when you are filled with trials. That truly is a joyous person.

What do you think makes the abundant people in your life that way? I’m eager to ask MGM if I got any of this right! I’m working on emulation—maybe that will help my path stay straight.