This week is Mental Health Awareness week and I find it significant that the strap-line favoured by the Mental Health Foundation is ‘ Surviving or Thriving?’
Surviving or Thriving?
So what does this actually mean? I can best talk about this by reference to my own life experience.
For many years I suffered from Anxiety and Depression and, I really believed I would never be free of them. Periodically I went to my GP and was put on medication, which worked for a while. Inevitably Medication stopped and slowly my symptoms returned. This merry-go-round did not stop me getting on in life. I married, we started a family, and I worked my way up the career ladder.
I went through a succession of management positions, changed my field of employment and even tried self employment. Perhaps not surprisingly whatever I changed in my life I couldn’t change myself. I looked for ways to enjoy life more, reduce my stress, and ‘feel better’. Problem was – I didn’t understand what the problem was! Whatever I changed I could’t escape my twin enemies – anxiety and depression – they followed me like a cloud.
You are normal?
A little over three years ago, after a particularly bad period, I was told by a psychologist “Ian you’re normal”. This revelation took a bit of understanding. All those years of believing there was something wrong with me and now I was being told there wasn’t! So why had I felt so bad?
The answer to this,seemingly mundane, but important question was that I had been surviving and not thriving. I had spent many years ‘going through the motions’ and never fully enjoying my life. By many peoples standards my life was pretty good – great family, stable marriage, nice house etc etc. So, how did I react to that – I beat myself up for feeling bad, which just made me feel worse!
Armed with the knowledge that I was actually normal my challenge was to understand what this meant and how it affected me. Rather than run around trying to change the infrastructure of my life I had to learn how to appreciate it and process life in a positive way.
The Thrive Programme taught me how my belief systems and thinking styles were affecting me adversely – causing me to only survive. It was not long before I could change and/or adjust those beliefs that were holding me back. I quickly learnt that I was my own biggest critic – most other people actually had higher opinions of me than I did myself ! I then learnt about my thinking styles and the influence a negative, or catastrophic, thought could have on my mood.
This was something new and exciting. For the first time in my life I was learning how to thrive – surviving was no longer enough. Now I am Thriving, and, whats better, I have retrained as a Thrive Programme Consultant and I teach others how to thrive.
What about you?
Are you surviving or thriving? It’s quite easy to tell. Do any of the following sound like you? –
Are you not as happy or contented as you could be?
Does life feel like an uphill struggle?
Do you truly enjoy your successes or are you always waiting for the next problem?
Is worrying about the future stopping you enjoying the present?
I used to answer yes to questions like these, what about you ? Well it doesn’t take a genius to know whether you are surviving or thriving and which is best !
The really good news is you can change all this, and I can teach you how with The Thrive Programme. It worked for me and it can work you you too. In as little as 6 to 8 weeks you can change your answer to the question “are you Surviving or Thriving?”
Contact me now to arrange a free, no obligation chat so that you can take the first step towards your thriving future.