My mission in life is not merely to survive, but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.
True happiness… is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.
As we are still in the midst of a global pandemic, many of us have been functioning in survival mode for quite some time now. Add in normal life stressors to this prolonged pandemic, and we’re also seeing higher levels of anxiety, depression, and grief in society today. But, what about the people who are still thriving right now? What’s different about them? How are they navigating all this uncertainty so well, while many of us are so paralyzed by fear?
In this blog, I’ll be delving into some of the traits often found when living in survival mode, what thriving in life may look like, and how to help you kids thrive in today’s world.
Survival mode is often described to me by my therapy clients as, “just getting through the day,” and is often something they report doing day after day.
Here’s what survival mode may look like:
- Going through the motions of your day/just getting through it.
- An emotional disconnection from others.
- A disconnection from your own inner feelings/inner world.
- Exhaustion/not sleeping well/not feeling well rested.
- A lack of interest in things you usually enjoy doing.
- A lack of direction in life/not setting and working towards future goals.
- Carrying guilt because you don’t have the energy to give more to your family, friends, job, yourself, etc.
- Feeling depleted (like you’re in a fog)/pessimism/negativity.
- Trouble concentrating and staying focused (foggy brain).
- Not feeling like yourself/feeling more irritable, agitated, angry, frustrated, etc. than normal.
Some of these areas may also be possible signs and symptoms of depression that may indicate a need to reach out to your doctor or a therapist in your state.
On the flipside, thriving in life may look like:
- Feeling excited and energized throughout your day.
- An emotional connection with those around you.
- Feeling well rested, centered and grounded in the here-and-now.
- Your life has purpose, meaning and direction.
- Finding fulfillment in activities you enjoy taking part in.
- An emotional connection to your inner feelings/inner world.
- Having the energy to support yourself and others.
- Feeling positive and optimistic.
- Being able to concentrate and stay focused.
- Feeling thankful and grateful.
What else would you add here?
Finally, let’s talk about how we can help our kids to thrive in today’s world. As parents, we all want what’s best for our kids. That being said, first start with working on your own “stuff.” If you’re currently living in survival mode, what needs to change so you can move into the thriving realm? What you do that positively impacts yourself will most likely also have a positive impact on your children as well.
For your kids, keep these keep these simple but important things in mind:
Kids thrive with…
Love/Empathy + Safety/Structure
Are you currently providing all of these things for your kids? If not, what’s stopping you?
Remember, there will always be external, stressful factors impacting all of our lives. But, we can work on bringing our own sense of calm with us in life, and stay in this relaxing space within ourselves, even in the midst of chaos. I hope this helps you all to work on moving from survival mode into a place of thriving in life, one step at a time!