Friday, February 11, 2011

Escaping the Scarcity Mentality

The mentality of scarcity is something that creeps up on me.  I try to cultivate this feeling of abundance by being really grateful for all it is I have.  But I think in these difficult economic times, where all the reports keep repeating how bad it is and how much worse it's getting, it's easy to slip into a mode of thinking that says that there couldn't possibly be enough or there won't be enough.

Photo Credit
I started thinking really deeply about this the other day because of two things.  Firstly, my knife.  You know I feel like a good, sharp knife is perhaps the most important tool in the kitchen.  Yet, I am always hesitant to sharpen my knife.  The other day I really took a moment to think about why.  I realized that deep inside, I don't want to sharpen it because I'm trying to prolong the life of it since it was such an expensive knife (by my standards).  Now, there's nothing wrong with trying to get the most out of something especially when you've paid good money for it.  Except if you are depriving yourself of enjoying that very thing, it kind of defeats the purpose.

Secondly, my running gloves.  These too were also a pretty big chunk of change for me.  The fact of the matter is that they are very good gloves under my wool mittens because they have a wind-breaking hood and actually keep my hands moderately warm so I can do things like unlock the door or strap my children into car seats.  But I found myself making the decision not to wear them, again, to prolong their life.  So I find myself with frosty fingers (my hands are always cold) wondering why I don't just always wear the dang running gloves.  

I figured out that the underlying thought process is that should the knife go dull or the gloves fray or get a hole, I won't be able to replace them.  That kind of thinking only increases my chances that this will indeed be the case.  So I'm actively looking for ways and working on methods to let go of this fear, to live in in the present and enjoy what I have now to the fullest.  

Does the scarcity mentality ever creep up on you?  How do you put it to rest?  


Serenity Love Sincere Peace Earth said...

Difficult economic times? The Rooms 2 Go commercial said the economy is booming!

I know what you mean. I'm a saver. But you aren't getting you money's worth if you don't use the stuff.

Contentedly Crunchy said...

Sorry I'm so late in responding. My RSS feed has been messed up for months and skipping some posts while sending me duplicates of others (across multiple blogs - not just yours). Anyway..

I actually have some of the same issues. Mine comes more with not being able to throw things away until they are completely used up - even if I already have a better alternative in my possession.

I'm trying to think of good examples. It's all really silly stuff. Like the hospital sent us home with disposable wipes and I had disposable diapers from my sister, and I had to use up everything before I could move on to the cloth stuff - even though I already had the cloth stuff and, really, I could have found someone to give the diapers to.

Or body lotion - only recently have I been able to get rid of lotions...and I NEVER use them! I don't know what I'm keeping them around for (I get them as gifts) - the day my skin suddenly becomes brittle and I need to slather myself in lotions I don't even enjoy the smell of?!?

Every time I want to get rid of something, I contemplate whether it could be re-purposed instead. As a consequence, I now have a ridiculous number of rags made out of old t-shirts!

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