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Money Matters – Understanding Abundance

Portrait Michael Thomas


Understanding Abundance


Having a clear understanding of abundance is instrumental in leading a prosperous, harmonious, and balanced life. If we can’t define it or identify it, how will we ever attain it?


By Michael Thomas Robinson


Last month, we discussed aligning your purpose with money and how it will propel you to live a peaceful and abundant life.


Abundance can be defined as: an ample quantity; affluence, wealth; relative degree of plentifulness. Source: Merriam Webster Dictionary


In my professional experience as an estate and financial planner, these definitions seem too elusive, too nebulous. Even when one is financially affluent, it has been my experience that money alone doesn’t guarantee a full, harmonious, balanced, and/or happy life.  I’ll never forget the first time I had the opportunity to work with a gentleman who had a net worth of over a billion dollars. What struck me was that he had admitted to being unhappy; his life was out of balance, and his family relations were anything but harmonious. Yet from the outside looking in, an observer might have believed his material wealth translated to happiness.


Understanding Abundance


Napoleon Hill, author, speaker and character analyst, defined 12 aspects that constitute ‘Real Riches.’ Based on a talk he gave after interviewing tens of thousands of successful businesspeople such as Andrew Carnegie, Theodore Roosevelt, and Thomas Edison, he determined that it’s their combination that will guide one on a path towards abundance.


1. Positive mental attitude

2. Sound physical health

3. Harmony in all relations

4. Freedom from fear

5. Hope for future achievement

6. Capacity for applied Faith with the ability to receive infinite intelligence

7. Willingness to share your blessings

8. To engage in a labor of love

9. An open mind on all subjects

10. Self-discipline

11. Wisdom with which to understand people

12. Financial security


Imagine these twelve aspects as spokes of a wheel. Each equally supports the other. When they are aligned properly, you will have a smooth ride; they are in harmony. The road of life, however, gets bumpy at times. Should one of the spokes become weak or break, your smooth ride may turn rough and lead to imbalance – a life filled with the potential for worry, stress, and anxiety. These feelings are the opposite of peace and abundance.


Note that financial security is the last of the twelve aspects. Many people mistakenly confuse abundance with material wealth.


Self Reflection/ Assessment Exercise


1. Set time aside to contemplate each of the twelve aspects as they apply to your life now.

2.  On each, evaluate yourself on a scale of 1-10, with 1 being the lowest and 10 being the perfect score.

3. Add the results and divide by 12. This is your average.  A score of 7 is a pass but leaves room for improvement.

4. Put an aspect a day into your planner or digital assistant, preferably starting with one that you are currently most aligned with. Upon waking up and going to bed, reflect on it. Put it to daily practice. Set a reminder to check in throughout the day.

5. After a month, assess the changes. Then write a definition of what your life of abundance looks like now that you have a clearer understating of what it is.


In order to preserve abundance and pass along financial resources, property, principles and values, we’ll cover the basics of estate planning in our next installment.


Michael Thomas Robinson II is a Certified Estate and Trust Specialist. He assists individuals and families with their financial and estate planning needs, and provides personal and business coaching. Michael also teaches Yoga and meditation: pureplanning.org.



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