Can You Have Too Much Abundance? My answer to the Ecotrain QOTW

in ecotrain •  last month



So this week, the @ecotrain question of the week is

"Abundance Woes: What have you had too much abundance of, and how did you deal with it?
What would have been the likely outcome if you had not dealt with it both short and long term?"

(if you have some thoughts that you'd like to write about, the deadline is Thursday 25th April and the post details are here:

Ecotrain Question of the Week

I was going to initially answer this as that I have an abundance of good fortune, as there has been no time in my life where I have no roof over my head, or food on the table. I have been blessed well and truly by this fact.

But, I read something this morning that made me change my track, good ‘ol synchronicity…

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My Little Guilty Abundance Secret



My guilty abundance is definitely wanting to do everything. I think that might be something that a lot of people are guilty of. Okay, so not EVERY SINGLE thing, but I don’t have enough hours in the day to do everything I wanted to.

  • My daily to-do list is as long as Santa’s nice (or naughty) list.
  • I come across exciting new ventures to try every day
  • My brain explodes with great idea after great idea, but I don’t have the time to try them all
  • I have many places on my bucket list that I’d like to visit
  • I love to try different foods (especially chocolate) and I am spoilt for choice.
  • I want to read every exciting blog post online
  • I want to catch up with people I’ve not spoken too in ages.
  • I want to start new hobbies that would take months to master
  • I want to write books, novels, poetry and children’s stories
  • I want to socialise more, but still have enough time for work, kids and some solitude to myself.

Obviously achieving all this is impossible and I really feel that I’m not alone in continually wanting more.

I discovered there is a term for this want in Buddhism. It sounds very judgemental - greed.

But in this context, it really is not judgmental as it describes the common human attribute of always wanting more.

Yes, it is human nature to overload ourselves with too much to do - this is really the reason why we are always busy and living in a state of constant overwhelm.

And the side effects are that we are easily distracted, overeat, get addicted to things, own so many material possessions, and a lot of us are in debt.

The form of greed is so common that we don’t even realise we are doing it and that there is an issue with it because we live in a consumerist society.

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The Anecdote to Wanting Everthing



So, is there an anecdote to this ‘greed’? A way to deal with it?

There surely is…

Simple Focus.

Stay with me, I will tell you how you can achieve this too, Its a work in progress for me, but I like to share my journey and the hints and tips I pick up along the way.

It's the art of focussing on one crucial thing and letting the other 57 things on your to-do list go. You might be eager to blast through the to-do list, but instead of indulging the greed, we can simplify and practice focus.

It can be applied to all the scenarios we talked about above and more - wanting to do everything, read everything, indulge another idea, say yes to everything etc.

Step 1: Recognise the Greed

When you start to recognise the urge, the tendency by catching ourselves mid-thought, we can work with it.

Step 2: Acknowledge the Greed and how it affects you.

We need to realise and come to terms with the fact that indulging in the greed tendency only hurts us. It is acting on this greed that makes us stressed, always unsatisfied and overwhelmed. It also has a detrimental effect on our sleep, health, relationships, happiness and finances. Indulging might be a quick ‘hit’, but it will not lead to fulfilment.

Step 3: Choose to Refrain

The next step is to choose not to indulge but to refrain. When we decide to refrain we can pause. When we notice the urge to indulge, we can mindfully see how that urge manifests In our physical body with gentle curiosity. Try to do this dir a minute or two, even if the call is powerful, remember its a sensation.

Step 4: Focus with love.

Now we can choose to be generous to ourselves and be mindful and present about one activity. Instead of choosing everything, we choose one thing. In an ideal situation, it would be something that is meaningful and helps others, even if it's just a small thing. Let go of everything else and only for a little while (even just a few minutes) completely give this activity your full love and attention.



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A couple of Additional Tips to Make This Work For You

Extra Tip 1: Get rid of distractions

If you need help to focus, then prepare by switching off the internet, your phone, going to a different area in your house

Extra Tip 2: Practice overcoming the resistance

When you practise these steps, you are highly likely to feel resistance to focusing on one thing and doing this one selected activity. You will want to do something else, anything else and feel this resistance to doing that one thing. This is completely normal.

You can practise overcoming this resistance in the same way as you did the urge - feeling the physical sensations, meditating on it. Again, it is just a sensation that you can learn to accept and let go.

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What would have been the likely outcome if you had not dealt with it both short and long term?



If you don’t do this in the short term or long term, you will be treading water and not moving forward. You will still have the same overwhelm, stress and greed that you always have had.

You will still live in the consumerist world and not experience all the beauty that simplicity and the world has to offer.

A year will pass, and nothing will change and if you are happy with your life, so be it, if not there is some gold here in this post, living in the moment and resisting this ‘greed’ can change your life.

So overall this is an excellent way to go about your daily tasks and honestly decide what is most important in your life and the tasks that don’t do you (or anyone) any good.

You can also do this with material things and possessions, as well as tasks, just pick the things you need to be happy and simplify by letting go of the rest. You don’t need to experience everything, go everywhere and have everything.

When you let go and be present, you can go about life mindfully and let those stresses fly out the window and smile at the simplest, beautiful things, content with what life has to offer.

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Nice to see that you picked a mental / emotional abundance instead of a physical one. It gives it all a whole new perspective. Of course, it's a balance: on one hand it's good to experience different things, after all, that's what I believe we are here for. On the other hand, in order to experience one thing properly, we need to focus on it. Thanks for these great tips in achieving this!


Agreed. Everything in moderation, but you are much more likely to achieve your dreams and goals if you simplify and don't try to do everything at once, but instead, do it one step at a time and love the journey as much as the destination.

I think we're all guilty of this and find it hard to temper it. These are some great tips to avoid getting stressed at not accomplishing everything.

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It is definitely part of human nature. Learning about mindfulness has definitely changed my life in many positive ways. I'm not always that good at it yet, but throwing myself wholeheartedly into a task really works a treat.

Sometimes I find the best days are when I simply relax. Those of us that are driven to be productive find it very hard to simply be...

I would never want to sit around each day doing nothing - but there is such value in simply sitting in peace. Making some time each day to ponder life, meditate, calm the mind. I find when I do make quality time for this that my waking day life becomes even more productive.

Like all things, it's all about good balance. Great thoughts and thank you for sharing. My best to you in trying to balance all those great activities ;-)


Yes, it will take some careful planning to balance it and no doubt some dead ends and revisiting the drawing board, but I feel in a really good place at the moment, so just going to use that to ride the waves and see me through any more difficulties :)

Questioning the question? A woman after my own heart! LOL..... My take home? Focus With Love. Everything I know and feel and believe about abundance and manifestation tells me this is the key. The flow is only over-abundant if I am not mindful enough of the many I could share it with, at which point there is no OVER-abundance, just everyone happy and full. I like the mindful light your shone onto the challenge @hopehuggs - much gratitude.

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No man (or woman) is an island - all we do and how we interact with people all has an impact on everyone around us and also nature. If the vibes and actions we sent out are positive, filled with love and good intentions, the world would benefit in so many ways.

yay she's back ;) and some great food for thought,, nice job <3!


yes, this one turned out really well. A new abundance seems to be the many wonderful questions to ponder and answer. I'm loving getting back to a better place in my head.

There is abundant greed in the world today and we all are guilty of this. Anyway, i am working very hard every day to let go that greed, and serve people and planet. Living a simple minimalist life style really helps to make us better people

Whenever I fall into my old habits of making long lists and demands on my self, inevitably I'll become stressed out and sick. Life is more beautiful when we are mindful and connected to everything around us. As our busy season kicks in, reading this serves as a perfectly timed reminder.