Commit Small Acts of Random Abundance

If you live in the United States, chances are that today you have plans to gather ’round a giant turkey (or Tofurky!) with your loved ones and enjoy a feast. A giant celebration of abundance, indulgence, and maybe even a nap, too.

Taking a day to celebrate the bounty of life and meditate on gratitude is a wonderful thing, and I wish everyone celebrating Thanksgiving – or not – an amazing day.

But what are we all going to do tomorrow? Or the day after? In my neck of the woods, beyond leftovers, Black Friday Madness, and December holidays there is winter. Where will our abundance be then?

I’m here, before the hustle and bustle of the meal, before naps in front of the football game, to remind you to bring today’s sense of abundance and greatness to all your days. For both yourself and your work.

Why is this important? Here’s one of my favorite quotes from The Artist’s Way by Julia Cameron, on art and abundance:

For those of us who have become artistically anorectic – yearning to be creative and refusing to feed that hunger in ourselves so that we become more and more focused on our deprivation – a little authentic luxury can go a long way. The key word here is authentic.

“Because art is born in expansion, in a belief in sufficient supply, it is critical that we pamper ourselves for the sense of abundance it brings to us. A box of raspberries or a small bouquet can bring a big shift in optimism.”

I found this to be true.

Practicing small acts of random abundance lets me live in a mindset of possibility.

It allows me to be flexible and spontaneous. All of which are vital to making my art, as well.

Now, I’m in no way recommending you go broke here. But there are many things we can do that we say no to. There is an almost imperceptible internal dialogue going on when I am choosing whether to make a small act of abundance or not, though it usually boils down to a matter of minutes or pennies.

In that moment of debate I’m either choosing to say yes to a tiny happiness, to a sense of always having enough, to enjoying small impracticalities, or saying yes to worry, fear, a sense of lack, and small-mindedness.

I’m here to remind you (and myself) to err on the side of hugeness. Of abundance.

Here are some of my favorite random acts of abundance:

  • Randomly buying my husband flowers as a way of saying thank you.
  • Sometimes saying yes to a small thing my stepdaughter is asking for. It’s important for her to learn to budget, but it’s also important for her to feel that there is enough.
  • Not skimping on the small things. Drinking the best green tea, eating good chocolate, writing with my favorite pen. Making sure I have little bits of things I will enjoy, instead of not-so-great things I bought in bulk.
  • Feeling abundant with my time. Twenty minutes curled up with a novel or snuggling my son or husband will not significantly detract from my productivity, but will go far in making me feel good that day.
  • Giving things away that are no longer useful to me but could make someone else’s day, like when I passed on my obsolete Baby Bjorn. Do I really want to spend my time trying to make a couple bucks on Craigslist or just make someone (and myself) really happy?

Small acts of abundance in everyday life are acts of faith – faith that more is on the way, that we will be okay, that we have all we need.

The act of making a creative idea a reality and sending it out into the world to live is also an act of faith – faith that we will have more ideas to share, that our well is endless.

It’s the same state of mind, act of faith. Abundance and art feed each other.

So, of course, my Creative Call to Action for you is this: Commit random acts of abundance in your everday life. Start by doing one small act a day for the next week. I’ll be doing it with you, starting tomorrow, over on theĀ Edison Rex blog. Join me and share your adventures in abundance!

6 thoughts on “Commit Small Acts of Random Abundance

  1. This was a fabulous post, Maeg! Happy Thanksgiving (ours is all wrapped up in Canada for a while now, of course, but I love that the American one is a do-over of sorts. A chance to remind ourselves to be thankful, continually.) Thank You ever so much for the poignant reminder to practice random Abundance & the practical tips for applying it. I especially enjoyed how you applied it to sharing creative ideas, since I don’t have a lot of material things to share, but love to share creative tidbits. And thank you for your writing; it’s a joy to read!

  2. Thank you for this! We all need this reminder, more often than I’d like to admit. My new act of abundance recently has been to join in with other card makers in the 52 Weeks of Mail campaign (which you can find on Facebook)–we’ve committed to send a card to a friend, for no particular reason, once a week for a year. It started on October 7 and so far I’ve done it every week–sometimes to a friend or family member, once to my dentist, once to a woman who works at the paper store (her card was delivered by hand). This tiny gesture brings out such lovely responses! I really think we’ll save the world one tiny step at a time.

  3. Great post Maeg, I’m with you on this one. It’s too easy to scrimp on something for no reason, because you think you should. I’ve just done mine for the day (bought some special moisturizer that I have been wanting for ages, that is a more than I would normally pay but is the only thing that cures the dry skin on my legs)

  4. I love Katy’s idea about sending a card to someone every week for a year! Hmm… I love how that act of abundance will effect others as well. Similar to Claire, I just splurged on expensive shampoo in the drugstore. I spent about five minutes contemplating the price difference between this shampoo and the cheapest one they had but ultimately decided it would make my mornings more enjoyable so decided to splurge. I think it was the right thing to do in the end!

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