Abundance Mindset

Leading from an Abundance Mindset

Do you lead from an abundance mindset or from a crabby one?

I’m learning to lead from an abundance mindset. And, I think you should join me on this journey. The abundance mindset views success as infinite and believes there is more than enough success to go around to everyone. This with an abundance mindset are happy to help others succeed. 

An excellent example of this are Sherpa guides. 

The Sherpa are a Tibetian people group native to Nepal. They are most famous for helping climbers reach the top of Mt. Everest. The Sherpa guide is a fellow traveler who helps climbers on a journey he’s gone on before. 

To be honest, I don’t like the title of this post. The phrase “abundance mindset” rubs me the wrong way. I’ve read far too many pop-psychology articles that over promise and under deliver. The good news is that this post does not suggest that the universe is one’s genie. Nor does it propose that if we think enough happy thoughts, life will go our way. Nevertheless, it really is about the power of an abundance mindset. Let me start with a story that explains what the abundance mindset is all about.

How an Abundance Mindset Changed My Life

This story is about a group of friends who had an abundant mindset. Eventually, their unique way of viewing the world rubbed off on me too.

My connection to Adam Smith began while I was researching my own book and blog. I stumbled across Adam’s leadership site and was impressed with his writing style. Adam’s compassion for people and a genuine desire to support others immediately stood out. At the end of one of his posts, Adam asked, “How can I help you succeed?”

This is an excellent example of an abundance mindset. Those with an abundance mindset don’t view success as a limited commodity. Instead, they believe that there is more than enough to go around.

When I read Adam’s offer, many thoughts went through my head. I wondered:

  • Is he serious?
  • Will Adam actually respond?
  • Or is he only acting like he wants to connect to expand his own platform?

Curiosity got the best of me. I e-mailed Adam later that day. I asked him if he would consider endorsing my book if it contained a message that he believed in.

The Path of an Abundance Mindset

Adam’s offer to help led to my e-mail. I’m excited to report that Adam quickly responded. He was kind enough to endorse my book. In fact, you can find it at the front of Coffee Shop Conversations. A short time later, Adam offered me weekly guest-post in his daily blog. Adam and his team have added a ton of value to my life over the past year. Hopefully, I’ve added value to their lives as well. Interestingly, all of these positive interactions came about because Adam isn’t afraid to help others succeed.

The Crabby Mindset

Now, let’s contrast this with the crabby mindset. While the abundance mindset views the world as having enough for everyone, the crabby mindset sees the world as a place with minimal resources. [Tweet “The crabby mindset says, “When other’s success, it makes my own success less likely.” #DontBeACrab “]

It’s the old, crab in a bucket, mentality. From what I’ve heard, a bucket full of crabs will try to prevent each other from climbing out. As one crab moves toward the top, the crabs on the bottom pull him back down. Apparently, crabs believe that there is only enough space outside of the bucket for one of them. Sadly, sometimes people act this way too. Insecure leaders pull others down. They fear that if others succeed, they will be overshadowed. This is the crabby mindset at it’s worst.

The Power of an Abundance Mindset

In the book, How Full Is Your Bucket? There is a great line by Dr. Barbara Fredrickson. She suggests that investing in others’ lives creates “chains of interpersonal events” with far-reaching results. The book proposes that “Every time you fill a bucket (or positively invest in the life of another human being), you’re setting something into motion.”

I’ve witnessed this first hand. Adam took the time to pour into my life, which has led to many long-standing and far-reaching connections.

abundance mindset

The Abundance Mindset and Scripture

Psalm 50:10 talks about God owning the cattle on a thousand hills. Genesis 1 describes how God spoke the world into existence. Our loving God has unlimited resources. [Tweet “The fear that the success of others will lead to our failure, is simply irrational.”]

Those with an abundance mindset are willing to put Matthew 5:44 into action. In this passage, Jesus exhorts his followers with the words, “Love your enemies! Pray for those who persecute you!” The abundance mindset is an attitude of selflessness. It’s demonstrated by an extreme willingness to serve others. Even one’s enemies!

The Abundance Mindset and Success

The abundance mindset doesn’t guarantee success. [Tweet “The abundance mindset create this chain of interpersonal events that makes success more likely.”]

The abundance mindset doesn’t guarantee that every person we help will reciprocate the favor. Although some reciprocation is the natural result of holding this world view.

Finally, the abundance mindset doesn’t demand that we become a doormat for others. Helping every person, we come across would be impossible in the exact way that they would like. It does mean that we don’t hold back from helping others out of fear.

Lately, I’ve come across several articles suggesting that the way to success–personally and financially–is through relationships. And the best relationships are formed when there is an attitude of giving, selflessness, and encouragement.

Abundance Mindset

So what about you. Do you have an abundance mindset or a crabby mindset? And how will you support others this week? Finally, following my friend Adam’s footsteps, how can I be of encouragement to you? You can let me know in the comments below, or drop me an e-mail at jed@coffeeshopconversations.com. I look forward to hearing from you soon!

Jed Jurchenko

Jed Jurchenko is the husband to an incredible wife, daddy to four amazing girls, and a foster dad to one more. He's served as a children's pastor, marriage and family therapist, psychology professor, award-winning writing coach, and life coach. Jed is the author of 23 books on relationships, parenting, writing, and doing life well. In his free time, you'll find Jed reading, preparing for an upcoming marathon, barbecuing, paddle boarding, and enjoying life with his incredible family. Find out more about Jed's books, coaching, and courses at www.ithrive320.com.

12 thoughts on “Leading from an Abundance Mindset”

  1. Great post, Jed!

    I enjoyed your story of Adam and his willingness to help you. Your blogging and faithfulness continues
    to add value to the worldwide community. There are two facts I LOVE about this article.

    1. You lifted someone else up for their faithfulness
    2. You practice what you teach and go out of your way to continue this abundance mindset in others.

    You have left me looking forward to your next post, yet again.

    I also enjoy, Adam’s site, but will have to dedicate some more time in digging around and searching it out. 🙂

    1. Thanks Joshua,

      I have a lot left to learn, but am fortunate to have made some great friends, who have been an incredible support along the way. Sure appreciate you, and all that I’m gaining from your site and our friendship too!

  2. Jed I think you have a bottom-less bucket of abundance. Great article and thanks for adding value to my life. Through you and our work together on Adam’s site has allowed me to connect with many people you know. These people have also brought me value and growth. Now that is real compound interest I like to see in my piggy bank.

    1. Thanks Kirby,
      You are part of that incredible, “chains of interpersonal events,” that resulted from my initial connection with Adam. I appreciate our friendship, and you add a ton of value to my life as well. It’s fun watching your coaching site grow! I love how you “pull back the curtain,” and provide insights into how everything works. This has been incredibly helpful in my own learning. And thank you for all of the encouragement and support along the way too!

  3. Great post Jed! This is a great challenge for me and encouragement to continue to oour into others. Thank you for living what you write and your encouragement to me.

    1. Thanks Jeremy,
      I sure appreciate you dropping by and taking the time to comment. I’ve been enjoying your site as well. “As iron sharpens iron…” right? 🙂 I’m looking forward to some some great conversations in the days ahead!

  4. Thank you for all the kind words, Jed. But this concept doesn’t do much good if it doesn’t spread. Thankful that you get it my friend.

    1. Absolutely! You’ve helped me get this, and many others too. I’m grateful for an abundance of new friends this year. Many of whom I met through my connection with you. Thank you again for all that you do!

  5. I concur. 🙂

    In fact, I know you through Adam’s site, and am currently writing there as a result of having met you.

    I particularly like the “bucket of crabs” image, which will stick with me and, I’m sure, be something I refer to again.

    I like Barbara Fredrickson’s wording, “sets in motion a chain of interpersonal events,” as well as the entire concept behind it. Some people we invest in will be consumers only, taking whatever we offer and then holding out their hand for more. We just have to use wisdom in where we invest. I don’t believe we should only invest into the lives of those who are looking to give back (as a mentor to youth, and someone who is intentional about helping the helpless in various ways, this would not work very well). But when we invest freely, without regard for getting back, there often are really cool surprises that happen, as far as that “chain of interpersonal events.”

    Now, just for fun …

    The picture with the business group drawing the light bulb made me laugh. Why are they all wearing essentially the same shirt? Perhaps their “chain of interpersonal events” was a collective closet.

    I also laughed at the image of the hand drawing the bridge for the cartoon man. I couldn’t help but think of the artist snickering diabolically as he encourages the guy by starting to draw a bridge   – and then suddenly stops, without the cartoon guy noticing.

    1. Yes, it really is amazing how many friends I made while blogging over at Adam’s site! You, Adam, Kirby, Glenn, Christina, Reade, and the entire team. I love how this chain of interpersonal events, just keeps going, with deeper relationships and new relationships, happening every day. I love how you highlight that we need to be helping others freely, not just those who give back. This isn’t always easy, but it is so important. I can think of so many people who were a huge support in my life when I was hurting. I’ll never be able to repay them, but I will be forever grateful for their support, and the life-changing role they played in my story. The thought that you and I have the opportunity to impact the lives of others in this way, is pretty incredible!

      Thanks Erik, I had fun picking out the pictures for this post 🙂

  6. Hey, Jed!

    Thanks for writing about this. I have a crabby side, but the abundance mindset has brought me the most happiness, success and strongest relationships.

    I was fortunate to learn several years ago that helping others is a great investment. It adds happiness to the lives of others, and most of the people who benefit from my help, want to help me in return.

    You’ve already been a great encouragement to me with your thoughtful comments over on jonbeaty.com. I want to know what I can do to encourage you!

    1. Thanks Jon,

      You are an enormous encouragement to me every week! I love following your blog. You’ve got such a great mix of honesty, integrity, and solid research. I always learn something new, and leave inspired to take action.

      I sure appreciate you joining in the conversation over here too. I’m amazed at how much I’m able to learn and grow from these on-line communities. Thank you for helping me sharpen my own thinking each week 🙂

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