I was born homeless.
For a long time, I accepted poverty. By the time I was in 6th grade, I had already lived in over a dozen homes. Among them were dusty attics, cobwebbed and cramped apartments, and basements with roaches and rats.
In one place, which was a 500 square foot basement, there was no windows. The four of us (my family) had no privacy. Throughout my youth, we faced years of financial hardship, even times of welfare and deep hunger.
In those days, my family pridefully affirmed our poverty: "We can't afford it. It's too expensive. We'll get it next year." We also believed that rich people were bad and assumed they were never there to help people like us. I believed those lies.
I also heard people saying, "It's better to be poor and happy then rich and miserable." Since I didn't think being 'rich and happy' was possible, it seemed like being 'poor and happy' was the best option.
As my teenage years came, I found myself befriending poorer friends. As I grew older, my own lifestyle was an utter mess and consisted of complete disorganization and chaos. My bank account never exceeded $1,000.
Because this was the condition I tolerated, I remained poor.
Everything changed when I came across this ONE idea that made me wealthy:
You are exactly who you decide to be!
The truth was that I decided to be poor. I never looked for a better lifestyle, so who as I to expect it? I basically went to the buffet of life with a teaspoon in hand! I was not ready to receive what was already waiting for me.
Throughout my journey, I learned that I needed to hate mediocrity if I wanted success. I couldn't work dead-end jobs unless I wanted to remain broke. I had to change my beliefs about myself, others, and everything around me.
Belief is the starting point of change.
As a student, I prepared myself for a job upon graduation. I would tell myself, "If I could just make $1,000 per week (or $50,000 per year), I would be able to retire at 50, if I played my cards right."
Because of that mindset, I applied to hundreds of jobs with that salary range and went to dozens of interviews. A few interviewers considered me, but all of them rejected me in the end.
This was the recurring story of my life. All people, including myself, play a story in their heads. This story focuses more on limitations and adversities, instead of abundance and wealth. I learned that I had to change my story. You can too!
Adversity is your ticket to greatness.
For far too long, I settled for less. I went for the crumbs when the feast was available. Little did I know that my abundance was awaiting my recognition and acceptance. I was like a fish in water asking myself, "Where's the water?"
It was all around me.
It's all around you too. Like the fish, you need to open your gills. If you look around, there is wealth and prosperity for you, but only if you choose to see it. Think about it for a moment. On Earth, you'll find that everything is available to us and nothing is lacking. All we need to do is seek it out.
When you see abject poverty, it's usually due to neglect and abuse from other people. Their lack of wealth is found in their thoughts. It is never the result of universal laws, but instead the ignorance of truth, love, and wisdom.
This truth, love, and wisdom can be harnessed by any person who has the desire to do better in life. It can be used to extract the abundance that is available to all of us. It doesn't matter who you are, where you started, or what you do. You just have to see it within yourself.
If you can see it, you can be it
Let's use an example. If you saw a mansion in your area, would you consider it an impossibility or could you see yourself owning it? In the past, I would have rejected the possibility. Those old thoughts would have filled my head, "We can't afford it. It's too expensive. Maybe we'll get it next year."
Once I believed that I deserved more in life, I started to see that it could eventually be mine. You must see yourself as the person that you would like to become. You cannot depend on anyone else to do it for you. You must decide to live a life of abundance and work towards it.
You're the sum total of all your decisions
After visiting dozens of mansions, I've cultivated a multitude of ideas of what I would like my mansion to look like. I learned who my potential builders would be. I've determined the dimensions of each room. Oh, and I've also attracted the money in order to build the home of my dreams.
Did I stop here? Of course not! I still seek fresh ideas to develop my house and while I'm working on it, I continually implement more of these ideas (imagine basting a turkey to keep it juicy). Building the house is never done, neither is building a life. You must continue to see great things for yourself.
If you can view it, you can do it!
If you want to become wealthy, you must decide now. Your happiness will come from aspiring and desiring, not acquiring. You must want abundance for your life before you get it. If you're in financial troubles, stop denying it and focus on accumulating ideas of wealth. When the mind is ready, the money will come!