Are you thriving or surviving?
I have always considered myself a survivor. Like many of you reading this I have been through my share of sh#@t! Being on the other side of that sh#@t I have looked back and given myself a little pat on the back and said good job surviving that, and I have received much kudos from others on my survival skills. However, I was listening to a podcast the other day that really made me think. This podcast was by one of my fav horsey people who has definitely crossed over to the woo woo side which makes me love him even more. He was interviewing a gal that does transformational healing and such, and she was discussing her same survival skills and in conversation with someone regarding that they said to her “you know the problem with “survivors” is they need to keep creating situations in which they need to survive. “Wouldn’t it be better to thrive….than always having to survive?” Ouch! So then I started thinking about some of the things that I “survived” and thought, well I couldn’t keep XYZ from happening, and I survived so how do I avoid situations where sh#@t happens that’s out of my control?
For the record there is a possibility I sometimes create drama where there doesn’t need to be. For the most part, however, when what seems like tragedy strikes, or you feel like a failure things aren’t working out, or you just keep getting ‘no’ when you want a yes, sometimes you can not avoid it but you can change the way you look at it. A dramatic example that came to my mind something that has haunted me until this recent revelation, was when my uncle died. My “Uncle Bear” as I affectionately referred to him because of his big cuddly bear hugs and always brought me stuffed teddy bears when I was a kid. It’s a long story so the cliff note version is I was at a family get together in Pennsylvania, we were dancing and he used to spin me in and out (old fashioned dancing for my young readers) and he let go…When I turned around to see why, he was dead on the floor. It haunted me because I was so close to him, I was so young, and I felt it was my fault. However, with different glasses now, I can look at that moment and think, we were really close, he was very unhealthy morbidly obese and was going to die anyway, he died dancing, having fun, with me, how lucky am I to have gotten to spend his last second with him doing what he loved with someone he loved.
Other than tragedies, what are other ways that we can change our perspective to see life as thriving instead of surviving. I feel like often when we are trying to accomplish a goal, starting something new, and we keep hitting opposition or resistance or what we perceive as failure we want to just quit. I read a great quote the other day “sometimes not getting what you want is a wonderful stroke of luck” ~Dalai Lama
Another story…so many of you that know me know I have two super awesome kids. You may or may not know I spent most of my adult life thinking I could not have children. I have several well educated providers that told me for various reasons I was infertile so at very down point in my life, living in Ohio which I did not like, in a job I did not like, recently divorced, and apparently never going to be a mom, I decided it was time to start over. I needed to focus doing the things that brought me joy and the first one was to move out of the cold which brought me to Arizona, one by one all the other things started to fall into place too, including having kids. I can honestly say I never thought things would end up as amazing as they are but I can say at my low spot in Ohio I felt like things couldn’t be any worse and I ‘survived’ but I prefer to view that now as my path to thriving! Moving forward in my life now I plan to, and I hope you all will as well, is to view my perceived challenges and obstacles as excitement like a mystery door. It’s like well this isn’t going how I had hoped I wonder what exciting adventure must be in store for me instead…? So that my future life is one of thriving and less surviving.