I’ve been beating my head on the wall I’ve made using the flood of abundance-mindset and positive-thinking books – past and present – that populate my shelves as well as articles and posts and audio tapes and video thingummies and podcasts that lurk in the spaces my computer can reach.

It all sounds so good.  It’s all warm and fuzzy and smiley-face cool.

It’s also cotton-candy unsatisfactory.  I’ve got a really bad sugar-high going and the crash is imminent, looming, and certain.


It’s a truth, you know.  It really does feel better to understand that, for real, there is plenty for everybody and that we live in a spectacularly abundant natural world.

Understanding that there really is enough for you and yours is a marvelous thing to carry around with you in your head and in your heart.

As a wise old guy I knew once said, “You live most of your life inside your own head, so it makes sense to make sure it’s a good space.”

I’ve always liked that one.  It’s been one of my guiding lights as I wander around in this old world.

“Lighthouse” by Peter Merholz via Flickr [CC BY-SA 2.0]
No matter what’s going on outside, if my inside is together and is what Hawaiians call “pono” – righteous and balanced between myself and others – then I can keep on walking and keep on getting to where I want to go and I can walk lightly instead of stomping around like some cut-rate T. rex.  (Dinosaurs are so yesterday, ya know.)

Building up our internal abundance, as Marianne Williamson points out in her book, EVERYDAY GRACE:  Having Hope, Finding Forgiveness and Making Miracles, does, indeed, work to mitigate external lack and turn it around.

She says, “As long as we remain vigilant at building our internal abundance – an abundance of forgiveness, an abundance of service, an abundance of love – then external lack is bound to be temporary.”  She’s right too.

Teacher, speaker, and author Charles Eisenstein has spent a lifetime looking at the Big Questions (Where do I come from?  Why am I here? Where am I going?) and fiercely focuses on themes like civilization as we know it, human consciousness, money, and cultural evolution.

His is one of the best explanations of the effects of so-called “scarcity thinking” I’ve ever come across.


From our immersion in scarcity arise the habits of scarcity.  From the scarcity of time arises the habit of hurrying.  From the scarcity of money comes the habit of greed.  From the scarcity of attention comes the habit of showing off.  From the scarcity of meaningful labor comes the habit of laziness.  From the scarcity of unconditional acceptance comes the habit of manipulation.”

And that’s another truth.


The thing is, I do sort of agree with Richelle E. Goodrich, a poet and novelist who does epic young adult fantasy books and has published a couple of collections of musings about life as well.

In one of her books, SMILE ANYWAY, she says, “You can add up your blessings or add up your troubles.  Either way you’ll find you have an abundance.”

“Wall Full Of Happy!” by Steve via Flickr [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]
The whole abundance thing can easily get to be…well…sort of dogmatic.

It’s easy to maintain the mindset when you’re surrounded by supportive group-think folks.  It’s like being in the middle of a wonderful group hug.  It feels really good.

But, the whole abundance movement thing can get hairy when you’re not surrounded by like-minded people and affirmations are a really crummy shield when there are guys gunning for you and acting out of their own sense of scarcity and not-enough.

There are predators in the world.  There are manipulators.  There are bad breaks and you can get blindsided by factors and conditions you haven’t noticed or considered.  At any given time, there are resources that you want and need which are not available to you when you want or need them.

While it is a truth that you create your own world, it is also a truth that everybody else creates their own worlds as well…and together we make the world we all have to live in.

The one thing about being human is that nobody is the sole creator of this consensus world of ours nor are we the progenitors of Life-Its-Own-Self.  Humbling, I know, but there it is.

Some parts of our consensus world are not so good.  It’s a work in progress, after all, and the builders often disagree on what goes where and what happens next.

An old proverb (probably German) tells us, “God gives us everything we need, but he doesn’t throw it into the nest.”

“Well, hello there” by Bill Collison via Flickr [CC BY-NC 2.0]
That one’s been around a long time.  Another truth.  It’s all out there, but you have to notice it.  Then you have to get up and go get it.

I find that I’m leery of the idea that I’m a magnet à la that Law-of-Attraction thing.  I keep seeing images of stuff flying through the air and hitting me upside the head.  Ouch!


My own thought is that abundance-thinking is just a part of your Living Life toolbox.

What the abundance-thinking mindset helps with is figuring out a way to go for it which does not cause a lot of collateral damage that comes back to bite you or that haunts you until the end of your days.

This, I think, is a very good thing.

Maybe the positivity thing is like vitamins and minerals.  You need a minimum daily dose of the things for your body’s optimal performance and you can take supplement pills to make sure you get them all, but you do have to stay aware that even stuff that’s good for you can kill you if you overdo it.

“Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds” by Steven Depolo via Flickr [CC BY 2.0]


Perhaps the only antidote to this paradox is developing receptivity and looking at the appropriateness of any given action.

“Receptivity” is all about noticing.  You see and accept what’s in front of you.  “Appropriateness” is doing just enough to move something in a certain direction and nothing more.

It’s like an aikido of the mind.  The whole point in aikido is to notice the direction your partner-in-play is making and to help them go in that direction (perhaps more definitely than they want) and, thus, to move them out of your own way.

“Aikido” by Javier Montano via Flickr [CC BY-NC-ND 2.0]
Then you’re free to go do what you want to do.


Here are some questions to consider before you go off loaded for bear or walk through an outlaw town as the guy or gal without a gun:

  • Is the action you’re planning to take an appropriate response to whatever circumstance you are facing?
  • Are you receptive to the world around you? Are there conditions or factors in a situation that could have an impact on what you are trying to do?  What can you do about them?
  • Are you noticing things that are wonky in another person’s walk? What can you do to mitigate the effects of that?
  • Are you noticing things that you are doing that just don’t work? Can you do something different that might work better?

One of my favorite quotes is from poet Maya Angelou: “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.

That last may be the biggest test to run on any action before you take it:  How will it make other people feel?  Are you good with that?

“Swirling a Mystery…for Kim Marie and Aunt Hinkle” by QThomas Bower via Flicker [CC BY 2.0]
Here’s a poem:


 I guess it’s confusing for

Some people in my life.

They’re never quite sure

Whether I am a grizzly

Pretending to be a chipmunk

Or a chipmunk

Pretending I’m a bear.


I figure that’s cool.

I think that’s fair.


The ones who care about me

Apparently don’t mind:

That creature-feature’s just me,

And the ones who love me embrace it,

Knowing that just as they walk their way

I am walking mine.


I figure that’s great.

I think that’s fine.


The ones who have agendas

And shoulds and oughts and want

Their opinions to have dominion

Are likely to think twice

‘Bout coming at me sideways,

May think the cost of doing that

Might not be worth the price.


I figure that’s cool too.

I think that’s nice.

by Netta Kanoho

Header photo credit:  “Making Cotton Candy” by Steven Depolo via Flickr [CC BY 2.0]



(Click on each of the post titles below and see where it takes you…)


Thanks for your visit.  I’d appreciate it if you would drop a note or comment below and tell me your thoughts.

31 thoughts on “WALK THE REAL

  1. Thank you Netta for your inspirational article. I’m impressed when your friend said “You live most of your life inside your own head, so it makes sense to make sure it’s a good space.”

    It’s life:
    “Knowing that just as they walk their way.. I am walking mine.”
    “May think the cost of doing that.. Might not be worth the price.”

    1. Hey Smadi:

      Thank you for the visit and for sharing what you enjoyed about the post.  I do appreciate it.

      Please come again!

  2. Anita M Liberatore says:

    You raise some really good points and questions in this article. Abundance thinking and all the positive thinking means nothing if you cannot relate it to what is going on in your own life and in the lives of those who surround you.

    I will still choose to think abundantly, but using the very same questions you raise, I manage to walk with abundance and to teach those around me to do the same

    One thing you didn’t bring up directly is to treat others as you wish to be treated. Taking into consideration how your actions will make someone feel is the first step towards doing that. I think you have to take it a little farther though, because I have found that others tend to treat you the way you treat them.

    Thanks for a very thought provoking article, which I plan to share with my son who is struggling in his own walk with mental health and substance abuse issues. A dose of reality may help him make sense of all of it.

    1. Hey Anita:

      Thanks for your visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I hope the post will be helpful to your son.

      My own self, I think abundance-thinking is a very good stance and the only one that makes sense in the long run.  

      I am still working on my thinking about the “treat others as you would like to be treated” thing.  What I’m finding with that one is that it is actually more effective if you treat others the way THEY want to be treated.  This is a bunch harder to do, I’m finding.    

      Please do come again….

  3. KingAndrea says:

    Reading through this article right now has made me realise more about life and that what we offer to the world to be our ideology about it is very important. 

    Its true that this world is a large one and it can entertain everyone’s free exploration. 

    I enjoyed the quoted words, they helped in understanding better. Thanks.

    1. KingAndrea, thank you for the visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I’m glad the post was helpful.

      Please do come again.

  4. Netta-
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts and words with us. “You live most of your life inside your own head, so it makes sense to make sure it’s a good space”. Something I have always known and believed, but never in words.

    Keep writing and I will keep coming back.


    1. Sharen, thank you for your visit and for sharing your thoughts. I am glad the post resonated with you.

      Yes, yes! Come again! (Hee!)

  5. Christine says:

    I love that quote about living mostly inside your head, so we better make sure it’s a good place. We tend to neglect that place, don’t we? 

    I am going to copy that quote and put it on my kitchen cabinet, so I can always see it. It will be a good reminder and help me build my inner abundance. 

    Your article comes to me at the right time, because I am trying to get over something sad that recently happened.

    I never thought of it that it is like others are gunning for you since they are in a lack of abundance … It’s been happening to me, terrible neighbors, my boyfriend … I thought of it last night, how I could not allow others to hurt me anymore.  Those people are indeed predators …

    You have some good questions here and I will analyze them later regarding my situation. I think they will help.

    1. Christine, thank you for the visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I am glad the post is a help to you.

      Keep on building your own inner abundance.  As it grows, it seems to me, more and more people come who are as supportive of you as you are of them.  It’s weird, but it does work.

      Please do come again.

  6. I must say I was very impressed with what I have read in this article, especially the poem.  I especially like the part when you said, “The ones who have agendas/And shoulds and oughts and want/Their opinions to have dominion/ Are likely to think twice/‘Bout coming at me sideways.”

    Thanks a lot.  My understanding has been increased after that.

    1. Feji ben, thanks for your visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I am glad that the post was helpful to you.

      Please come again.

  7. You are absolutely right.  I really do think too much and most of the time it leads me to an assumption that I purely predicted and freaked out myself. It is such an energy draining. 

    I have lately been bingeing on all the motivational books as well such as Brian Tracy or Mel Robbins etc. 

    I have to check Everyday Grace out. I would love to learn more from her. 

    I also agree that thinking too much can also be a positive thing. I have saved myself numerous time because of this even though I got a lot of stress from it. 

    As always your poem is beautiful. Until next time. 


    1. Nuttanee, thanks for your visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I am glad you enjoyed the post.

      Please do come again.

  8. Shahlla Anjum says:

    The beauty of the article ‘Walk the Real’ lies in its flow and continuity of thoughts. The writing has the power to grab the attention of readers completely. The sentences are well written and so coordinated that it is not possible for the reader to skip any. 

    There are messages of hope, motivation, and originality. The discussion of true values helps the readers to reflect and think. They can relate to the thought process and go with the flow of the beauty and creativity. 

    The examples shared from famous books are very well related to the text and enhancing its beauty.

    1. Shahlla, thank you for your visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I do appreciate it, and I am pleased that this post was beautiful for you.

      Please do come again.

  9. Netta you are so amazing on this . I really want to commend you for your creativity and insightful ness, the part that caught my fancy is this;
    I guess it’s confusing for

    Some people in my life.

    They’re never quite sure

    Whether I am a grizzly

    Pretending to be a chipmunk

    Or a chipmunk

    Pretending I’m a bear.
    I will like go through your poems again and again.

    1. Thanks for your visits and for your kind words. I do appreciate them. I am very pleased that the post caught your attention and resonated with you.

      Please do come again….

  10. Netta I must say that you did a very nice job on these poems. The part that really caught my fancy is;
    “From our immersion in scarcity arise the habits of scarcity. From the scarcity of time arises the habit of hurrying. From the scarcity of money comes the habit of greed. From the scarcity of attention comes the habit of showing off. From the scarcity of meaningful labor comes the habit of laziness. From the scarcity of unconditional acceptance comes the habit of manipulation.”

  11. What a thought-provoking article. I’m saving to re-read later today to make sure I’ve absorbed it all. I am what I consider a realistic optimist. My glass of water is always half full and indeed even being added to. But I know that sometimes a bit might spill out. I keep working on keeping it filling.

    One thought that has been explained to me is that everything cannot always be sunshine. For without the rain, how could we truly appreciate the sun? I think your article hints at that same concept. 

    I’ve learned to be thankful for the rain. For rain makes things grow. And when it stops, the rainbows appear.

    Thanks for sharing a very useful perspective. I’ll be sharing with friends!

    1. Thanks for the visit and for sharing your thoughts, Diane.  I do agree totally with your ideas.  I especially like the bit about making sure to keep on filling that glass.  

      Please do come again.

  12. Steviejohn41 says:

    Wow! Your thoughts and prescription of books covered never ceases to wow me. The ideas that you pulled together to provide this quality information is a million times worth it. 

    This right here has blessed me and affected most of my beliefs. I will learn to focus more on my internal self as it determines the outward appearance. The old wise guy was right  and you too, indeed most of our life is lived inside our head.

    1. Thanks for your visit and for sharing your thoughts, Steviejohn41.  I am pleased you enjoyed the post.

      Please come again.

  13. This is really mind blowing. A touching words. This is fantastic. Have really picked so much from this.

    1. Thanks for the visit, Queen. I am so glad the post proved useful to you.

      Please do come again.

  14. Hi there. I was just having a read at your article and I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed it. 

    I find that we can often skirt past many of these topics amongst the hustle and bustle of our day to day lives. So, it’s good to read articles like these from time to time to keep the mind healthy and our knowledge broad.

    1. An interesting thought, Kwidzin.  You are right that it’s a lot easy to forget to notice how we’re moving when we’re busy jumping on our horses and riding off in all directions.  

      Please do come again.

  15. Nabeel Razzaq says:

    This article is deep, I mean very insightful for those who give their full attention. What I understood is that abundance thinking is just the opposite of overthinking. Both of them have benefits and negatives, um mostly negative I would say.

    But going along in your life with just any type of thinking can really improve the way you live. It’s natural. Just let it come and keep moving with it.

    And lastly, Haven’t read a poem for a while now. Those poems are really inspirational and cheerful! Thanks for sharing a great article.

    1. I like your musings, Nabeel.  Thanks for the visit and for sharing your thoughts.

      Please do come again.

  16. Michel Maling says:

    I love your words of advice “You live most of your life inside your own head, so it makes sense to make sure it’s a good space.” This just makes so much sense and is also why it is so important for people to take care of their mental health as well as their physical health.

    So many concentrate on physical only, and forget that stress and our rushed lives make a huge impact on our mental health. Practicing mindfulness and gratitude is one way, but there are also many other things one can do to destress and be in the moment.

    Thanks for this very thought provoking article, and the poem at the end just added to it’s value. Did you write it?

    1. Michel, thanks for your visit and for sharing your thoughts.  I am really pleased that the post resonated with you.

      The poems I feature at the end of my posts in this thing are my own.  I started calling them “Life-Built Poems” when I realized that they were the distillations of my responses to what was happening in the world around me.

      They are my go-to way to make sense of the confusion I often feel trying to deal with other people and Life-Its-Own-Self.  They do work well for that.

      Please do come again.

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