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4-Steps to Simple Abundance

moving beyond tension-stress-fear into freedom, peace and flow

  • Are you tired of stressing over life not going your way?
  • Do the people around you say that you're too demanding?
  • Would you like more spaciousness, freedom and flow?

Here are 4-steps to simple abundance. I experience abundance when I'm consciously aware of the many options I have to meet my needs -- i.e. I have an inner-trust that my needs can be met through various strategies. I love the spaciousness, freedom and flow that I find through this practice. I suggest writing out the answers to each of the steps on paper, especially the first few times of completing the steps. It helps me to remember that life is filled with options. If you find it difficult to follow these steps on your own, seek out the counsel of a wise friend or counselor. Another option is to click here to get on my calendar for coaching (first 30 min. free).

1. List one thing you do that brings joy

What brings you joy? This is a great place to start this journey because it's easiest (the process works for other less joyful endeavors too). We're after something specific that you enjoy, perhaps dealing with a Person, Location, Action, Time, Object (PLATO); this makes it a "strategy".

Example Strategy: It brings me joy to jog to the park alone every other morning after I wake up.

Let's identify the elements of this strategy:

  • Person: me (alone)
  • Location: the park
  • Action: jogging
  • Time: every other morning after I wake up
  • Object: I put on my running shoes to do it; I also wear weather appropriate clothing.
It helps to be as specific with all PLATO elements of a strategy, because each choice provides possibilities for change in the future.

2. Why does that strategy bring you joy?

Given that we've identified a strategy that brings us joy, now we get to explore why it brings us joy -- i.e. what needs/values are satisfied when we do it? Needs/values are independent of PLATO, differentiating them with strategies. Click here for a listing of sample universal human needs. We now identify the needs/values satisfied by my strategy of jogging to the park.

Example Needs/Values:

  • Autonomy
  • Self-empowerment
  • Personal Responsibility
  • Health
  • Well-Being
  • Predictability (because I do it every other morning)
  • Rest (I sleep more deeply the nights that I jog)
  • Inner-Peace
  • Connection to Nature
As I notice all the needs satisfied by my strategy of jogging to the park every other morning, I'm appreciating why it brings me joy -- i.e. because it satisfies so many needs. Knowing this and having it written down helps to encourage me to do it more often, especially when other strategies are vying for my time/energy.

3. For the need/value that has the most intensity, list 3-5
new strategies to satisfy it.

I recommend pausing to connect with each one of the needs identified in the previous step. As you hold space for each need, imagining why you value it, perhaps even imagining that need is fully met, pay attention to your body while looking for any shifts toward relaxation, like a release of energy (e.g. a sigh, deep breath, tears, etc.). So many of those needs listed are important to me. Right now, I'm resonating with Inner-Peace; given that selection, I'm going to use my creative imagination to list 3-5 new strategies to satisfy my need for Inner-Peace.

Example Other Strategies for Inner-Peace:

  • Deep Breathing
  • Take a nap
  • Journal
  • Yoga
  • Tai Chi
  • Prayer
  • Meditation
  • Ecstatic Dance
  • Wandering in Nature
  • Schedule an Empathy Session
I was on a roll and listed more than 5 new strategies; in fact, I could list a lot more!

4. Look inside: what are you feeling?

As you review the work you've done in the previous steps, look inside to what you're feeling. Hoping that you're feeling content around some learning that's taken place; maybe celebrating self-empowerment? Or perhaps you're happy because of the awareness of freedom in having options.


If you’re feeling some sort of contentment in the abundance of options, you’re done with this thread! I do suggest repeating the steps for different strategies at step #1 until it becomes easy. I'd love to hear how these steps worked for you in the comments below -- are you willing to post something?

Next Steps

The steps and concepts presented here are based on Nonviolent Communication (NVC) by Marshall Rosenberg. I provide NVC Coaching (first 30 minutes free) that could help you to find simple abundance, improve your ability to identify your feelings/needs and to connect with others. I also have various offerings listed on Meetup and Facebook. The Center for Nonviolent Communication is also a good resource.

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