And How Practicing these Tips Can Change Your Career and Life
by Angelica Imhoede | 5 January 2020
Being the oldest of three girls, life was more of a checklist for me growing up. I spent most of my time taking the practical routes for things because I was scared of stepping outside the box. I was always afraid to make mistakes and often would talk myself out of things that I wanted for fear of failure because I wanted to be perfect. For me, perfection meant taking the safe routes with no risks of getting it wrong because then I wouldn’t be vulnerable to messing up.
Part of the reason I did this was that my mother, having no family in the United States, was raising three daughters by herself after my father died. I wanted to make sure that I did everything right to make her proud – even if that left me putting my real passions on the back burner. I was worried about our finances and didn’t understand how we were able to survive financially without the patriarch of the family around. It was around this time that I adopted a scarcity mindset.
What is a scarcity mindset?
A scarcity mindset is a belief that there will never be enough, resulting in feelings of fear, stress, and anxiety.
It was never enough for me to sit and just let things happen; I had to make things happen to ensure that I had enough. As soon as I was able to work, I started saving. I never asked my mom for money during these days because I wanted to prove that I could take care of myself. In that scarcity mindset, my ambitions for myself grew and so did my checklist of what I needed to accomplish. I excelled in school, making straight As in high school, which led me to a full-ride in college after winning $250,000 in scholarship money.
Graduating from College with a Scarcity Mindset
I graduated with a degree in finance and began a career in corporate America. I remember thinking to myself when I got my first paycheck, “this isn’t enough money. I need to make more!” So I did – every year climbing and increasing my income and getting more miserable as the years went on. You see, what I didn’t consider was that more money equals more problems. The more you make, the more demanding your job becomes. I had a scarcity mindset, and it was killing me slowly and causing all sorts of anxiety in my life.
How the Wrong Mindset made me Crash and Burn
After giving birth to my son in 2017, I returned to work and was promoted to manager six months later. I was so obsessed with proving that I could get promoted by taking on all sorts of office responsibilities that I didn’t even realize I had postpartum depression. I finally crashed and burned six months later while on a client project based in New York City.
Sitting in front of the Managing Director (MD) at our firm one day, I bawled my eyes out. I pushed just a little too hard this time and took on a crazy client with a sick baby at home, working 15 hours days, and not sleeping anymore. To say I was stressed was an understatement. My MD pitying me, gave me a sabbatical for a month, but I came back with a new mindset. I didn’t need to prove anything anymore because I was enough and had enough. I realized that my scarcity mindset had led me to a finish line that I was not prepared for.
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Creating a New Mindset of Abundance
My new-found abundance mindset was starting to materialize, and I began to develop a deep sense of personal worth and security. I left my firm shortly after and began to transition my role out of management into a more individual contributor-role to focus on myself and my family. I needed inner peace, and I also needed to work on things that I had kept putting on the back burner in my quest to have more stability. I also came up with tips to stave off the scarcity mindset and reel myself back in.
These were the lessons I learned:
1.Taking moments of Gratitude
My biggest lesson was to devote and carve out time for myself, reflecting on things that I have accomplished or obtained and be grateful for them. I’m so used to thinking about what I don’t have that I don’t take the time to focus on what I do have. It’s important to know that everything that you have is a blessing and not look for the next best thing!
2.Breathing and Meditation
One of the negative symptoms of having a scarcity mindset is also getting anxiety. I have suffered for a long time with anxiety personally, to the point of physical pain a few times. Meditation and breathing through it has always helped me resolve any deep turmoil I feel. Which ultimately leads me to relaxation when I do it.
3.Spending time with Loved Ones
Honestly, when I’m spending time with my husband, son, family, or friends, I don’t think about money at all or things. I think about all the good times and fun with the people in my life. Spending time with loved ones helps center your mindset and bring more clarity into your life on what is essential to you. Also, keep people who make you laugh around; they are the real gems in your life!
I genuinely believe in the power of words, and aids in battling my scarcity mindset. If you speak negativity, then negativity manifests. If you talk about positivity, then positivity happens. That’s why it’s important to be mindful of what you say – You only want good things to come to fruition.
Based on these four things, I became more grateful for all that I had in my life and have learned to let that scarcity mindset go. As I mentioned, I’ve overcome this mindset for a while, but I would be lying if I didn’t say there are days when I start wondering about the what-ifs or thoughts of wanting more. However, I have found ways to combat even those thoughts before they even settle in my mind. The point is that I’m not perfect, and I’ve come to love my imperfection and to be content in my version of what wealth and having things mean.
Meet Angelica Imhoede creator of Financial Lioness, a platform dedicated to advocating generational wealth and bringing insight to financial literacy. Having spent the last decade in banking and financial services, Angelica created her platform to bring awareness to the wealth gap in America and the inequalities that come with systemic racism in the financial sector. She spends a lot of her time online creating and publishing digital content related to all topics covered under personal finance. Recently she published her first E-book, Investing for the Everyday Investor, a step-by-step guide of investing for everyday people to learn the foundation of investing. Angelica is a native of Minneapolis, Minnesota, where she currently resides with her husband and son. She attended the University of St. Thomas, and received a degree in finance and is currently obtaining her Masters in Data Science. She loves cooking, dancing, and spending time with her family. You can always catch her online on her IG page at Financial Lioness or her website.