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Have you ever taken the time to look into how you define yourself? What is it that defines your sense of self worth, what is it that defines how you see yourself, and what is it that defines how you think others perceive you?
Being challenged to spend no money this month beyond absolute necessities has been quite a journey this month, and it has also be a time of great reflection.
In reflecting this week, I have realized that in spending zero, we have been stripped of what it is that we often use to define ourselves. We so easily, often without realizing it, gain our identity from what we can buy and the status we feel that these things will bring us.
So often, we are all guilty of gaining our sense of self worth from our bank accounts, our collection of possessions, or even the status we feel we have attained in the eyes of those around us.
While it is feasible to recognize that the things we own and the balances in our bank accounts don’t define us, it is also true that the reverse of this is also true. Meaning, the lack of these things doesn’t define us either.
If you’ve ever been at a point in life where you’ve falling on hard times, or maybe you’re there right now, your lack of possessions and your lack of money threaten to define you. However, it is during these times, more than other other time, that it is important to remember that we are really all the same when all of these things are stripped away. This concept can be a lifeline if the bottom has fallen out from underneath you.
The interesting thing is that in doing this Living Well & Spending Zero Challenge with more than 60,000 people, the playing field was leveled among us all. No matter the balance in our checking account or the financial means that normally separate us one from the other, we were all called to the same thing. We were all called to spend zero this month and aside from the few slips and bumps along the way, that is what we have all done.
Together, all 60,000 of us, have embraced the same reality, and that is such a mind blowing concept to me.
As we work toward completing this journey in a few days, I want to encourage you to finish strong. I also want to encourage you to cross the finish line with a fresh perspective on what truly defines you – what truly defines all of us. I want to encourage you to finish with a renewed focus on what truly matters, which in most cases, has nothing to do with what we have in our homes, in our bank accounts, and even in our lives.
I have a renewed focus on the fact that it is not what we have in our lives that truly matters. I have come to realize, more than ever before, that it is who we have in our lives that truly matters. I have been reminded that it is so easy to blur the lines between what we need and what we want. I have been reminded that so often we need so much less than we think we do. I have been reminded that it is not in what we have that we find happiness, and it is also not in what we have or don’t have that we are defined.
If someone were to ask you how you define yourself, how would you answer? I know in my case, my answer would have been so different on October 1st than what it will be on October 31st.
My encouragement to you is to spend some time deciding how you define yourself and those around you. Doing so can be a very humbling experience.