The Hidden Power Within You

The Hidden Power Within You

How often have you said the following?

  • If I get that job, my problems will go away.
  • If I get that promotion, I’ll be better with my money.
  • If my bonus is big enough, I’ll pay off my debts.

If you’ve said these or anything similar, you’re not alone. Most of us have said such things. We say them to ourselves. We say them to friends and family. Most importantly, we believe them.

When we say them we’re looking externally rather than internally. We don’t take ownership.

When we look externally to improve our lives, we give up on the power within us. By default, we’re not responsible for our results.

It’s In Your Head

Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can or can’t, either way you are right.” We’re responsible for creating our reality. Our thoughts create our action and our actions create our outcome.

Studies suggest that people who focus on scarcity produce scarcity. Sendhil Mullainathan and Eldar Shafir discuss in their book, Scarcity: The New Science of Having Less and How It Defines Our Lives, how poor farmers in India tend to weed their farms less often than wealthy farmers, thereby producing less abundant crops. Less abundant crops are less profitable.

Mullainathan and Shafir share studies that show that belief of being poor lowers one’s IQ by the same amount as one night of lost sleep. The Indian farmers scored worse on intelligence tests before their harvests when they had little money and better after their harvest when they had more money. By simply having more money, their performance on intelligence tests improved.

The power within us is our thoughts. Someone who believes it’s someone else’s fault that they don’t have enough money makes decisions that perpetuate their belief. They won’t create a budget; therefore they never have enough money. They’ll live on credit cards and stay in debt. They’ll miss financial opportunities because they won’t see them, and then wonder why they’re unlucky.

Victor Fankle said that between a stimulus and a response is a space and in that space we make a decision. If we make the decision to change our response, we change our outcome.

How do we change our response and, thereby, change our outcome?

Control the Power Within You

Make a Plan

Just deciding to change our response to a stimulus doesn’t eliminate the stimulus. We need a plan. We must consider the financial decisions we’ll be confronted with and plan better responses.

For example, when planning for payday, rather than spending money before paying bills, plan on paying bills first. This way, you won’t be short on cash when bills come due.

Visualize Your Response

If we haven’t been successful with plans before, how will this time be better? Imagine likely scenarios and visualize your best responses. When these scenarios occur in real life, you’ll have already exercised your responses and will respond naturally.

The most successful athletes visualize their performances. Their visualization influences their behavior. In order to change your behavior, follow their example.

Visualize being better with your money. Visualize attracting money, rather than repelling it. Visualize transactions in which you make growth-oriented decisions.

Practice Gratitude

We know:

  • What we focus on expands.
  • Energy flows where attention goes.

As with the Indian farmers, if we focus on not having enough, we’ll perpetuate that state of being. We can change our current situation only by changing our perception of our current situation. Oprah Winfrey said, “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”

The best way to adopt an attitude of gratitude is to keep a gratitude journal. By daily writing down what you’re grateful for in life, you’ll have more. You’ll stop living in a world of scarcity and live in a world of abundance.

Get Support

Even having one friend or family member to act as your cheerleader will be immensely helpful. You’re human. You’ll make mistakes. There will be times when you’ll think, “It’s too hard.” With support, you’ll overcome these moments.

By practicing these four steps, you’ll change your thoughts, which will change your actions, which will change your results.

This is why the power within you is all the power you need.

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