One of my favorite quotes by Oprah Winfrey says, “If you look at what you have in life, you will always have more. If you look at what you don’t have in life, you’ll never have enough.”
Welcome to the School of Self-Image, where personal development meets style. Here’s your hostess, master life coach Tonya Leigh.
Well hello, beautiful friends. What’s going on? My life is so crazy right now, in the best of ways. I did an episode a while back called Living in the Question, and that’s what I’ve been doing. And I’ve come up with answers to the questions that I was asking myself. And I’ll be sharing them with you really soon. Super fun. Lots of exciting things in my personal life and in my business, so stay tuned.
Also, did you know that the doors to the School of Self-Image are open for a few days? Next month, we are going to be talking about elegant time management. I am going to be taking members into my own time management system. We’re going to be talking about our thoughts about time. It’s going to be so good. So, come and join us. Head over to schoolofself-image.com/join and I cannot wait to see you inside.
One of the courses within the School of Self-Image that’s available to annual members, so that’s any member who has been within the school for one full year, or anyone who chooses to join annually, meaning you may upfront for the whole year, gets access to the Wealthy Woman. It’s all about living in abundance, creating abundance, having abundance.
And I find that this topic of abundance is confusing for many people. In fact, when you think of the word abundance, what comes to mind? You may envision yourself at Neiman Marcus going on crazy shopping sprees. You may imagine yourself driving around in a brand-new sports car. You may imagine yourself living in a brand-new house by the beach. All of those things are amazing.
But I know of people who have had shopping sprees at Neiman’s, who drive around in fancy cars, and who live in their dream homes who are not living in abundance. They’re full of fear and scarcity. So, in this episode, I want to really clear up what it really means to live in abundance, because I do believe in the laws of the universe.
The laws of the universe say that like attracts like. When you are showing up in your life abundantly, you’re going to be drawing more of that abundance into you.
Now, within the School of Self-Image, a lot of the work that we do is learning how to live from our futures. So, many of you are living from your past, meaning you’re looking towards your past for evidence for how you’re feeling right now, versus looking into your future and how she’s showing up, how she’s thinking, and living from that place.
And inevitably, when I talk to members of the school, one of the traits that all of our future selves has is that she is full of abundance. Meaning she’s not staying up all night worrying about how she’s going to pay her bills. She’s not withholding because she’s full of lack and scarcity. She’s not worried about what other people think because she’s so full of abundance of her own self-value.
Now, where I see my students get mixed up is that they associate abundance with a lot of things. And so, because they don’t have a lot of things right now, whether the thing is a lot of money or a lot of potential love prospects or a lot of designer handbags, whatever the things are that they want, they use that as a reason not to feel abundant.
But abundance is a feeling. In fact, when you look up the definition of abundance, it means overflowing, fullness, extremely plentiful, and wealth. Because abundance is a feeling, it means it is not created by anything outside of you. What always creates how you feel are your thoughts. Your thoughts about what’s outside of you.
Which is why someone who can have lots and lots of money can still be full of scarcity. They’re afraid it’s going to run out. They’re afraid they’re not going to be able to make more. They’re afraid that they won’t be able to manage what they have. They’re full of scarcity and lack. And the reason why we want anything is because of a feeling. And to be a match for what you want means you have to create that feeling in your life now. That is a common theme of this podcast. If you’ve listened to past episodes, I repeat this over and over again. But we must put it into practice.
I had an interesting thing happen a few weeks ago that really showed me the power of this work, because I have been practicing on a daily basis for years living in abundance. I grew up in a world full of scarcity. I grew up in a trailer where we literally were worried about our lights being turned off at certain times, where we didn’t have money to go out to dinner. We picked beans out of a garden to eat.
And yet, crazy enough, until I started to look outside into the bigger world at what other people had, I didn’t feel like we were in lack or scarcity. In many ways, I had a very rich childhood. Lots of love, community, friends.
But when I started to look outside of me at how other people lived, I started to compare and I started to create a world of scarcity and lack. And so, for me, the unraveling has been to get back into a place of abundance.
So, a few weeks ago, I get this message from a woman on social media that said, “I really am interested in joining your School of Self-Image. It sounds amazing. It sounds exactly what I need. But…” there was a but. She said, “You give away so much free content on your podcast, I’m going to wait. I’m just going to really take in the podcast.”
And my response was, “Great, go enjoy the podcast. There’s amazing value over there.” But I was thinking about the old me. Even when I first started my business, I was full of scarcity and lack. I wanted to withhold. I wanted to retract. I wanted to pull back because I was full of scarcity. I didn’t know if what I was doing was going to work. I definitely still had a lot of lack and scarce thoughts.
But because I’ve been doing this work for so long and really waking up every day practicing living in abundance, my response to her was like, “Great, I hope you love it. When you’re ready, when you want to take this work to a deeper level, when you’re ready to invest in yourself, I’ll be here.”
There was no twinge of me wanting to hold back from the value that I give on this podcast. But I know some of you would start to doubt yourself. You’d start to think, “Maybe I am giving too much. Maybe I should come up with a different strategy.” But for me, it feels terrible to co me onto this podcast and not give you all I have. Why? Because it’s being driven out of fear and lack and scarcity, and that never feels good.
But here’s the thing I want you all to know. It’s not even about what you’re creating and what you’re doing. It’s the energy driving it. I could equally pull back from the value that I give on this podcast and feel abundant about it. I could get to a place where I’m like, “You know what? I’ve been giving so much value for so many years, what feels really good is to take a break and maybe do one a month, maybe do one a year, maybe stop doing the podcast at all,” and I could feel abundant about it.
But right now, where I am in my life, that doesn’t feel abundant at all. It’s almost like I have all of this energy, this creative flow that’s pumping its way throughout me, and to try to stop it feels awful. It’s like the pressure builds up. And we know what happens when pressure builds up in something and things aren’t flowing. It combusts. It’s not sustainable.
And yet, that’s how so many people are living their lives when you’re in a place of fear and scarcity and lack. You’re not allowing yourself to be the generous, expanded version of yourself. Years ago, I read this great book called the Go-Giver. It changed my life. It changed how I view abundance. It changed how I show up in my business, how I show up in my relationships, how I show up in a room full of a strangers.
And the basic premise of this book is that when you give value to the world, it comes back to you. This is a concept that we talk about in the Wealthy Woman. Women get very clear on the value they want to give to the world. And they’ve had crazy results as a result of doing this work.
And turning on that abundant mentality and not worrying about how it’s going to come back to you, but just giving because it feels so good to give when you are doing it from a place of abundance.
Now, there are times when we are giving, ladies, and it’s coming from fear and scarcity. That’s why I said you have to pay attention to the energy driving it. How many times have you given because you want to be liked? How many times have you given because you don’t want to disappoint others and as a result you end up disappointing yourself?
That’s why it’s not about what you’re doing. It is always about the energy driving it. So, you have to tune in and ask yourself, “Why am I doing what I’m doing? What’s driving this?” And if it’s being driven out of fear, lack, and scarcity, you need to stop doing it, or you need to get into a place of abundance before taking the action.
And again, this is where I see so much confusion. In fact, I was talking with my new man, who I’m so excited, I introduced him to the women within the membership. He’s incredible and we’ve been having a lot of conversations around abundance. Because he thinks when I talk about living in abundance, it means going out there and spending a lot of money.
He’s like, “That’s going to get you in trouble if that’s how you live your life.” And we have really heated debates about this topic. And I said, “Listen, hon, you’ve got this confused. Abundance is not about spending a lot of money.”
Some of you think, “Oh I’m going to live an abundant life so I’m going to go out there and buy all the things to prove that I’m in abundance.” But if you pay attention to what is driving you to do that, it’s coming from fear and scarcity and lack.
It’s just like there have been times in my life where it felt abundant to book an economy seat on an airline. It did not feel abundant to buy first class. It freaked me out. It wasn’t there yet. What felt truly abundant was to get in row 26 seat F. That felt the most abundant.
Now, it feels abundant for me to book first class, but it’s not even about what seat it is. It’s the energy driving it. And here’s the craziest thing, you all. The more abundant I feel, in many ways, I’m inspired to spend less money.
Think about it. When you feel full, do you want to eat more? Hopefully not, because there’s a deeper issue, right? When you feel truly abundant, oftentimes you don’t want to stuff your life with more things. Because if you think about it, the reason why we do that, the reason why we overspend is because we’re in a state of lack and scarcity.
We don’t think we look good enough. We don’t think we have good enough stuff. And so, we go out there and we try to fix an internal problem with an outward action that actually keeps us in a state of lack and scarcity.
Get into a state of abundance and then ask yourself, do I want this thing? Does it serve me? Does it truly feel abundant to buy this right now? What feels abundant to me is to have cash in my bank account. That feels abundant. To get rid of it creates a sense of lack in my life. I don’t like how that feels.
But then sometimes, I have a desire, something that I want, and it feels amazing to go and purchase it. So, this is not a black and white thing. It is a simple process of paying attention to why you are doing whatever it is that you’re doing and paying attention to the energy that is driving your actions.
Because if you continue to take actions out of lack and scarcity, you’re going to keep perpetuating that feeling. Why? Because like attracts like. So, if your predominant state of being is one of lack and scarcity, you’re going to perpetually attract that into your life. If you pay attention, you will see how you sabotage yourself from having a life of abundance.
And what we often do is we try to fix it from the outside in. We go out there and try to make a lot more money or we try to get that thing that we’re wanting to get in order to feel abundant. But because we’re taking action out of lack and scarcity, it seems like that thing is always just shy from us. It’s just a little bit distant from where we are now.
You can never quite get it. It’s like you keep chasing this thing and it keeps running from you. And the reason is because you’re not a match for it yet. Your self-image does not allow for it yet.
In order to create abundance in your life and to live in abundance, you have to have a self-image of a woman who is abundant. You have to have a self-image that allows for abundance. So, if you’re walking around and you’re thinking thoughts and taking actions from a place of lack and scarcity, you are never going to be able to create the abundance that you desire.
It’s like the person that goes into the wild, wanting to attract animals. There are people that do this. They’re like animal whisperers. If you go into the wild wanting and needing animals to come up to you, the energy that you’re in is in a state of wanting, in a state of lack. And guess what happens? Animals sense that. They run. They don’t trust that.
But if you go into the wild and you just sit there in a place of abundance, not needing the animals to come up to you but delighting in the possibility that it could happen, and you’re enjoying being there and you’re enjoying who you are and you’re in a state of abundance, all those animals will start to come up to you. You’re attracting them because you’re in a state of abundance.
What if you were like that in your life? What if you lived in that place? What if you were a woman who is full of abundance when it comes to love? When it comes to wealth? When it comes to health? What if you walk through this world not needing or wanting but in a place of already having and feeling blessed for what you already have?
As Oprah said, you’ll have more. But if you’re always focused on what you don’t have, that is all you’re going to notice. It’s all you’re going to see. It’s all you’re going to attract into your experience because subconsciously you’re telling your brain what to look for.
And we don’t do this on purpose. It’s how our brains are wired. It’s not your fault. But after listening to this episode, I hope that you’ll notice when you are attracting lack and scarcity into your life because that’s what you’re focused on.
If you wake up every morning thinking, “What’s going to go wrong today? What if I don’t have enough?” you’re telling your brain to look for what’s going to go wrong today and why you don’t have enough.
But if you wake up in the morning looking for all that you do have, all that is possible, what could go right, you’re going to start to see different things. You’re going to start to feel in different ways. And as a result, you’re going to create a very different experience for yourself, an abundant one, one full of joy and love and excitement and wealth and health and all of the things that you desire.
Living in abundance is a practice. It doesn’t just happen. Because again, the brain is wired to take us to the worst-case scenario. So, you have to learn to manage your brain like a CEO. You have to tell your brain what to look for. You have to tell your brain what it is that you want to believe. And when it comes to abundance, I just choose to believe that there’s more than enough for all of us. The more I give, the more comes back to me.
I don’t need to know how it’s going to come back. But I trust that that energy is always, always flowing in my life. And because that is what I believe, I see it everywhere. What do you want to see everywhere? What kind of abundance do you want in your life? Start to look for it, my friends. I’ll see you in the next episode.
And hey, listen, if you want to go deeper into this work, come join us at the School of Self-Image, schoolofselfimage.com/join. I can’t wait to see you inside. Cheers.
Hey, have you grabbed your free copy of the School of Self-Image Manifesto? If not, what in the world? Head over to schoolofselfimage.com/manifesto and get a copy that teaches you how to think and show up in the areas of mindset, style, and surroundings so that you can transform your self-image.