How the Scarcity Paradigm stops innovation and wealth creation in its tracks
“Why can’t we generate enough resources, including money?”
“Why don’t we have the resources and revenue streams that are sustainable and more than we require?”
“Why do we spend an inordinate amount of time and resources trying to attract even more resources and money that are never enough?”
In our work with many thousands of for-profit and nonprofit organizations around the world, these are questions that constantly arise in the discussions of leaders.
And the answer is not what you think!
The greatest factor we have found that either creates or limits ongoing success in any organization, is the level of awareness or consciousness that the CEO, Board and staff bring to that organization. It is the points of view that these people have about money, resources and revenue sources that create the reality of that organization.
Most of the setbacks that appear in an organization occur when these people choose to operate from a scarcity paradigm. They truly believe there is not enough to go around, or too little of everything: opportunities, prospects, support, resources, time and money. Because of these scarcity points of view (which we term the Scarcity Paradigm), the organization operates from a basis of lack (lack of money, resources, staff, respect, influence etc.), and the leaders and staff act within their self-developed and self-imposed Scarcity Paradigm.
For example, it is generally acknowledged that most recessions and economic downturns are caused or intensified, not by the monetary realities of the country’s economy, but rather by people’s perceptions, attitudes, fear of scarcity and level of faith and confidence in the economy or their country. The scarcity attitude, outlooks and emotions of the general public create the negative economic culture and climate for the country, rather than the climate creating their point of view and emotions. The people’s thoughts and emotions are the cause of the scarcity conditions, not the effect.
The implications for us are huge: if a scarcity outlook is predominant within your organization, this will both create and embed scarcity.
It is time to change the conversation
These belief systems, more than anything else, hold back most organizations from being prosperous and successful. It is not because the government has failed to increase grants, not because customer numbers are falling, not because others just don’t understand what we are trying to achieve, _______ (you can fill in the other limitations you have created or have heard of…). The lack of prosperity in most organizations is because the leaders have chosen this.
The leaders have chosen to operate from a scarcity paradigm, and have belief systems about money and resources that impose severe limitations on the prosperity of their organization.
It is ultimately the leaders’ points of view that make the greatest difference in organizational culture, as those leaders have the greatest influence on the rest of the staff.
Leaders that have chosen to operate from a scarcity paradigm create a distrustful, cynical, apathetic, and pessimistic culture. They tend to focus on lack and blame their state on poor market conditions, natural disasters, changes in government legislation, and changes in interest rates or other external dilemmas. This scarcity paradigm and the conversations it generates tends to knock the enthusiasm and innovative spirit out of their people. This must change!
Creating a Different Conversation
Changing the conversation from one embedded in the Scarcity Paradigm to one of Prosperity Consciousness within organizations is critical for future and sustained business growth. Every individual has the capacity to choose whether to function from prosperity consciousness or the scarcity paradigm. Some people can experience abundance with whatever they have in their life. Some feel a scarcity even when they have many millions of dollars. The sense of abundance is a state of mind and an awareness which we call prosperity consciousness. The sense of lack is also a state of mind which we call the scarcity paradigm.
The Scarcity Paradigm can be basically defined as – “a belief in lack”. It is a set of attitudes and beliefs and feelings and values associated with lack or fear of lack. For scarcity to show up in your life you need to think it, believe it, and allow it.
There are three lies that underpin the Scarcity paradigm.
Lie #1. There is not enough, and there will never be enough.
The change required: There is plenty out there, where is it, who do I talk to, who has it, what if it looked different to what I had already decided it should look like?
Lie #2. It is hard, and getting harder
The change required: What if this was easy, what would need to change to make this even easier?
Lie #3. This is just the way things are, there is nothing we can do. This is the most invisible and pervasive of the lies, and takes away from us the ability to truly choose. This has the power to turn us into victims or to blame all on predetermined destiny or market forces, rather than being individuals who have the power to choose.
The change required: How do we want this to be? How we choose to interpret the rules and regulations of this reality is what makes us different!
Leaders create their reality and their organization’s reality exactly as their points of view are. This is the law of quantum physics that states “like energy attracts like energy”. At the heart of quantum mechanics is the idea that things exist through their relationships. Everything is connected. Every component of a system has the potential to affect all the other components. Our beliefs and our thoughts are part of that energy which is underlying our visible world. Quantum physicists call this reality the quantum field. The practical application of this basic law of physics is that ‘We have the choice to put our mind towards prosperity or scarcity.’
If you cultivate a belief system of scarcity and lack, then you will always have difficulty attracting resources and money. If you cultivate a belief system of abundance and prosperity, then you will greatly enhance your ability to attract resources and money through innovation and being strategic.
Creating prosperity consciousness within a business context requires both a new paradigm and the courage to break new ground beyond limitations and boundaries. The leader must be a creative and prosperity focused innovator who seeks and optimises opportunity, with a vision for infinite possibilities, is able to take the required risk and resultant opportunity, and progresses it to a valuable and sustainable conclusion.
It all starts with your point of view.