We often fail to realize the amount of control we have over our circumstances. If you’ve been living under difficult circumstances for some time, such as working a job you hate or suffering through an unsatisfying relationship, you may feel powerless and fed up. But what will finally allow you to change these circumstances is not constant focus on the problem. Rather, you must begin to cultivate a positive mindset and free up space for abundance and opportunity. During that process, these ten habits absolutely must be left behind.

1. A Mindset of Lack

The first and most obvious problem that must be addressed is a scarcity mindset, or a mindset of lack. This is the most critical pattern to address for two reasons: 1. we don’t usually realize that we are operating under this mindset 24/7; and 2: a lacking mindset is the direct opposite of an abundance mindset, making it pretty much impossible to attain abundance. You’ll hear those in a lacking mindset say things like, “I’m broke,” “I’ll be working forever,” or “Wealth is for lucky people.” While vowing to ditch these negative statements won’t make you rich overnight, it will position you to make better decisions in order to move toward the abundance you desire.

2. Bitterness

Bitterness involves reviewing negative experiences you’ve had in the past. This is all fine, as these experiences can teach you lessons. However, a feeling of bitterness causes you to adopt beliefs and bring them into the present. Thus if someone hurt you in the past, you may bring expectations of being hurt to new relationships. This expectation will impact your decision-making and taint your ability to see things as they really are.

3. Jealousy

Famous writer, Ralph Waldo Emerson once said, “Envy is ignorance, imitation is suicide.” What he meant was that when you experience jealousy toward another person, you are only seeing a small fraction of the picture — so you are ignorant to the full picture, which includes your own strengths and talents. When you feel jealous, you are seeing another’s fortune, while completely ignoring your own.

4. Self-Pity

Self-pity will hold you back from abundance because it frames you as a victim. We have all been victims to something at one time or another in our lives, but feeling like a victim habitually is a self-limiting habit. It encourages you to stop trying and promotes the idea that your actions cannot truly make a difference. Ultimately, this is a disempowering mindset that must be left behind.

5. Judgement

You might not think that judgement could relate to abundance, but in many insidious ways, it sabotages you far more than the people you judge. Judgement typically means making negative assumptions about others without deeply understanding their situation. As someone who is highly critical of others, you will likely be critical of yourself too. This mindset limits your ability to learn and open up to new experiences.

6. Laziness

For obvious reasons, being lazy or indolent prevents us from finding abundance, whether it be financial abundance or any other kind. There is a difference between relaxing and taking time for stillness, and perpetually avoiding things that challenge us. The latter is laziness. When you are lazy, you are often in a haze, not paying full attention to your feelings and desires. In that case, how can you follow the path that resonates with you?

7. Hesitation

Hesitation is often tied to doubt. When we see something that excites us, or something we’ve wanted to do for a while, doubt can cause hesitation and stagnancy. If you have many unfulfilled achievements and desires, ask yourself why you are hesitating to take action. Abundance is not just about material wealth, but also cultivating a feeling of “enough” — enough time and enough skill to achieve what we want.

8. Beliefs

While beliefs overlap with every other category in some way, they must be addressed as a separate issue — one which can permeate your entire life. Getting to the bottom of a belief requires more than just surface-level thought. This is because beliefs are usually hidden, but they dramatically influence our behavior. So an underlying belief like, “I am a failure,” can quietly hide in your psyche, causing you to exhibit one of the other traits on this list.

9. Effort

Yes, it seems counterintuitive, but our efforts can sometimes hinder us from attaining what we want. In this case, ask yourself whether you have been trying too hard and burning yourself out. Alternatively, maybe you have been putting all of your efforts into one tiny area of your life, or one narrow route to success. Remember that abundance doesn’t always come from the most obvious source.

10. Materialism

Lastly, we must be careful not to confuse abundance with other things — like monetary wealth, power over others, or expensive possessions. All of these things have a limited ability to provide fulfillment and a sense of abundance. Making material possessions or status your goal will leave you continuously disappointed, confused, and searching for the next best thing.

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