What is prosperity? According to Webster’s dictionary prosperity is the condition of being successful or thriving; or economic well-being.
Shakti Gawain, author of Creating True Prosperity describes prosperity as the “experience of having plenty of what we truly need and want in life, material and otherwise.” According to Ellen Peterson, author of Choosing Joy, Creating Abundance “prosperity is not what you have or how much you make; it’s actually how you think.” While Maria Nemeth, author of The Energy of Money says “Prosperity comes when you participate fully in every aspect of your life. It’s state of growth.”
Many people define prosperity as their career or position at work, education or degrees they’ve earned, where they live, cars they drive, schools their children attend, vacations they take, and even clothes and accessories they wear.
My definition of prosperity “living the life I love without worrying about financial constraints and having a happiness in my heart and spirit.” My life of prosperity began in August 2002 when I took early retirement from my public relations job with Social Security Administration.
But, I almost missed my opportunity because I wasn’t taking the time to get quiet and I wasn’t listening to my whispers. In June 2003 I attended Oprah’s Live Your Best Life Tour. Oprah says, Life speaks to you. First in whispers—your intuition. If you’re not paying attendion it’s gets a little louder, a tap on your shoulder. If you’re still not paying attention to get hit in the head with a brick. Still ignoring life speaking to you, a brick walls fall on you. And it you’re still not paying attention or listening, the earthquake hits.
It took an earthquake to make me listen. I wasn’t satisfied or happy with my job. It no longer felt like a career, it was just a way to make a living. It was the very best job I’d ever had, but like everything else in life, it changed. For almost a year I went to work unsatisfied and in search of something—something to satisfy me or make me happy. The problem? I wasn’t listening to my whispers. Not until March 2002 when I had what I call “my meltdown,” did I finally stop to listen. I took three weeks off from work and spent quiet time at home. It was amazing how quickly I heard my whispers once I took the time to spend by myself and get quiet. I read a quote that spoke to me and changed my life, “Our purpose in life is to find our gift, perfect it and give it back to others.” It was my Aha moment.
And yet several days later I wrote in my journal, “I am already wavering on my thoughts of taking early retirement and reaching out to women. I‘m sure it’s fear of the unknown and risking my secure retirement. It’s a terrible place to dwell—fear. I hope I can come to grips with it and move on, if that’s what I am supposed to do.” But, I followed Eleanor Roosevelt’s advice “You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing you think you cannot do.” I retired from my job in August 2002 and founded Money Wi$e Women. And, I’ve been living a life of prosperity ever since.
Prosperity is created by setting intentions. Intentions create thoughts. Thoughts create choices. Choice creates different outcome or action. Are you ready to live a life of prosperity? Start by taking time to being quiet and listening to yourself. Most women have trouble with getting quiet because we’re multi-taskers and busy taking care of everyone but ourselves. But, it’s crucial to carve some quiet time for yourself. I’m not good about journaling, but I’ve discovered that walking my dogs daily and listening to music on my iPod gets my creative juices flowing. When I have a little more time I read an inspirational or motivational book or I spend time rubber stamping. You need to discover what works for you. Since we’re approaching the holiday season, ask your family for the “gift of time.” Get creative with your request, maybe it’s a day by yourself once a month or a weekend away once every six-months. Whatever works for you.
Think about what your intentions are and take time to learn more about yourself and get to know yourself better. Spend time excavating your inner thoughts and writing them down—what makes you happy and what lights your fire. Working with a life coach has made a huge difference in my life. My coach has helped me determine what lights my fire and help me to purposely stay focused on my goals.
Know that life isn’t happening without you. You’re in the driver’s seat, you’re in charge! You are responsible for your choices. Align your life with what’s important to you and you’ll be on the road to living a life of prosperity.