Paradigm Shifts Part I: Your Beliefs on Wealth By, Van K. Tharp, PhD

Editor’s Note: Dr. Van Tharp’s content is timeless and our goal is to continue to share his material with our readers. Today’s feature is material from a past article.

Without the proper mindset, the best financial strategies in the world are worthless.

Many years ago, I taught an Infinite Wealth Workshop that covered a lot of financial strategies to attain wealth. Over the years, however, I have learned that abundance is an internal state and that external wealth flows out of that internal state.

In the version of the Infinite Wealth Workshop that we teach now, we focus much more on understanding the wealth mindset and working on your inner self—being wealthy inside first so that then you can effectively use financial strategies that fit you to achieve infinite wealth. (Infinite wealth does not mean numerous and luxurious possessions. Rather, it means having your monthly expenses taken care of by your passive income.)

Most people’s mental maps and paradigms about money tell them things like:

  • My net worth is the basis of my wealth.
  • Becoming wealthy requires years of hard work and saving.
  • The best things in life are expensive.
  • Money is real.

To the extent you are attached to these beliefs about money, you are trapped in your current situation. These beliefs, however, are just mental maps or paradigms — paradigms that you can change. For example, you can create money out of nothing. How? There are many ways actually and they are just a small part of what we teach at VTI’s Infinite Wealth Workshop.

With our next Infinite Wealth Workshop coming up in January, now is a good time to explore paradigm shifts in general and wealth paradigm shifts in particular.

Shifting Your Paradigms

There are three phases to paradigm shifts. The first phase is an awareness that the new paradigm is possible and that it might be more useful than the old one. Don’t take this step lightly because awareness alone is a major shift. The second phase comes with your understanding of the new paradigm and how it works. The third phase is a total knowingness of the new paradigm. In this final phase, the new paradigm works for you and is totally natural because it is part of you. You have internalized it fully.

I don’t claim to be in the third stage on any of the paradigms I have written about. Mostly, I speak from understanding and a sense of beginning to know. Read the following paradigms and determine where you are with respect to each. Perhaps you are further along with the shift than I am or perhaps by reading this article, you are just becoming aware of some of them. Just notice where you are and where you would like to be.

One other point: If I use the term paradigm shift in the context of focusing on a new paradigm, most people can accept the new paradigm as possibly true. Even when people accept a new paradigm, however, the shift indicates that the old paradigm is false. This is when many people start to argue, which indicates that they haven’t really made the new paradigm theirs—that they have not made the shift. As a result, I will phrase the language about shifting paradigms both in terms of accepting a new one and negating an old one.

Wealth Related Paradigm Shifts

In my opinion, there are six paradigm shifts that most people need to make before they can really achieve wealth. Talking about a new paradigm, however, means nothing. You have to understand it and know the material before it will have much effect on how you live your life. (Whether by Zoom or in person, establishing a classroom environment for group, partner, and individual exercises is the most effective way to help people thoroughly experience and integrate paradigm shifts.)

The first new paradigm is a combination of two meditations from the 40-day program in The Abundance Book by John Randolph Price.

1) Neither my job, nor my business, nor my bank account are my supply. Instead, God (or the universe) is lavish, unfailing abundance, the rich omnipresent substance of the Universe. This all-providing source of infinite prosperity is individualized as me — the reality of me.

For many of you, this statement may involve two paradigm shifts. The first one is that the external things that we rely upon are just illusions. They have nothing to do with our prosperity or our well-being. Instead, they are illusions that lock us into the box we are living in today. Think about the implications of not worrying about your job or your business or your bank account. Could you do it? Probably not! Yet, if you cannot do it, then you do not really accept the first major shift that God is the source of your unlimited abundance. I am speaking about God as you know God, not a specific religion.

You might accept this a little but most people certainly cannot accept the second paradigm shift: This unlimited source is individualized as you. That it is your reality! But think through the implications if the statement were true. In addition, think of the implications of the first statement being false. Or perhaps, it is just more useful to believe the second statement.

Step back my friends, there is so much more. The next paradigm shift is something I have been talking about throughout my career. One of the major purposes of my life is to teach this key paradigm shift to people.

2) Nothing happens to me. Instead, I am responsible for everything that occurs because I am in control of my life. I am in control of my beliefs, my thoughts, and my emotions and that’s what creates my experience. In fact, my major purpose in life is to decide, “Who I am,” and create my experience based upon that decision.

I have been teaching the idea of personal respond-ability since I first became a coach for traders. There are two versions of respond-ability. The easiest version for most people to understand is that you are responsible at, the very least, for your reactions to what happens. Most people can accept that, however, I’d like for you to consider the implications to your life of the paradigm shift that you actually create your life through your beliefs, thoughts, and emotions. It’s pretty dramatic.

If you believe this one, then you’ll find lots of evidence that it is true. If you don’t believe this one, you’ll probably find plenty of evidence that makes it untrue. Either way, you are illustrating the principle. Ponder on that one. And if that interests you, then I’d suggest reading the book from Neale Donald Walsh, Friendship with God. You might be really amazed.

3) If you are afraid to give, that’s what you’ll get back—fear. Instead, if you want enrichment and abundance, figure out how to enrich others.

The basis of making this shift stems from paradigm shifts one and two. If you acknowledge, understand, and finally reach a point of knowing that God is unlimited abundance and is individualized as you, then you should have no fear of giving and giving and giving. If you understand that you create your life, then you understand how giving is creating. And it comes back many times over. Not because you are giving, but because you have such faith in your unlimited source that it matters not what you give. You just give because you love to give.

This shift is just part of the Golden Rule that is common to almost any form of religion or spirituality. It works with material things and it is very obvious with elements like thoughts and emotions. What you give is what you get back.

The next shift is usually a major one for most people.

4) Money is not real. It is created by us and the creation originates from thought, not hard work. In fact, the more you tend to believe that money is real, the more you will tend to believe that you have to work hard for it.

First, it should be very clear to most people that governments invent money. They used to back this invented money with a rare metal like gold, but only the ideas of man gave gold any value. Later, we allowed our governments to get off the gold standard and back money with our debt—really, our debt! We tend to think of money as being real because there are grave penalties if anyone but the government prints it.

There are many ways to make your own money (legally) out of thin air. And if you don’t understand how it’s done (or even believe that it can be done), let me give you one example. Let’s say you know how to grow money at 40% per year through your trading. Raise some money from a group of investors, trade it, take a 30% fee out of the returns, and basically, you’ve manufactured money from nowhere. Notice your reactions to this kind of idea.

The fifth shift is one that I’m as close to the “knowing” level as any of these shifts. It will change your beliefs about money if you reach a point of understanding it even slightly.

5) You do not determine wealth by how much you have. In fact, “having” has nothing to do with wealth. Instead, wealth is how long you can exist at your current standard of living without working or doing anything. If you can last forever – that is if your passive income is greater than your expenses – then you are infinitely wealthy.

Once you are infinitely wealthy, you are free of any financial or time chains and you can increase your standard of living just by continuing to practice the principles that brought you there. This is the wealth principle that applies to the made-up substance called money (see principle 4 above).

There is an even more important shift than those:

6) Value is not created by scarcity. Instead, the most valuable “aspects” of life are all free.

What now appears most valuable to me is love, the ability to give (which I really always had), air, water, exercise, the ability to help and make a difference for many people, my creativity, my feelings, my health, and my spiritual relationship. Those are all free. Incidentally, a few years back when I was first really exploring these ideas, it was an immense breakthrough for me to write about these things for you. That breakthrough, of course, is just another testimony to shift number three. I’m not afraid to give this material to you. By sharing it, I’m getting back even more.

These six steps should help you to make immense paradigm shifts on a regular basis. Plan to do them for the next 30 days and let us know your results!

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