Thrive Or Survive? It’s A Mindset - Grasshopper
Are you hunkering down or gearing up? You may say that it depends on the situation, but if you investigate it a bit further, you'll find that you commonly select one over the other.
If you never played the game of three wishes as a kid, it goes like this: A friend asks you if you were granted three wishes, what would they be? You respond with your three wishes and then ask your friend what they would wish for.
The wishes were normally for things like a new bike, a million dollars, and no more school. Then one day, either you or your friend got creative. You would make your first two wishes and then your third wish would be something like this: I would wish for 100 more wishes.
That's thriving. The underlying thinking was that you couldn't possibly get all you wanted with just three wishes, so you envisioned having 100 more options for the future.
Thriving is expansion; survival is contraction. Both are necessary but we tend to default to one.
The people who live at the edge of either are head cases, and serve as poor examples of thriving or surviving. Think of them as the "hoarder on the hill" or the "race to nowhere" types.
Most of us fall somewhere in the middle of either type.
If you want to stay just the way you are, if you have it all figured out, and don't need to learn anything new, you are surviving - surviving on what you already know. Think of it this way: If you had to survive only on the food that's currently in your house, it wouldn't be too long before you would starve. That is the future for the survivor.
Thrivers are open to options - options that occasionally fall outside of their comfort zone. They are more curious than survivors and it's this curiosity that has them discover new ways to feed themselves, both figuratively and literally.
If you sense that I have a preference of one over the other, you would have guessed correctly. Thrivers are innovators; survivors have a tool kit filled with monkey wrenches to thwart innovative plans. But that's not necessarily a bad thing. It's like a check and balance system to keep the other from taking us to their respective edge.
Here's some arbitrary arithmetic: It seems that thrivers could adopt a 25% position in survivor stock to keep them in check, and survivors could use about 40% of thriver stock to move them out of the cement. We'd never want them to have equal positions in each other's stock because then it would be a lifetime tug-of-war match.
We need to thrive more. It's too easy to get complacent and fall into survival mode. Survival is a bleak outlook that causes us to wear blinders and miss seeing ever present opportunity.
Thriving and surviving are mindsets that are adjustable. We just have to notice where we fall on the continuum before we can make a modification to our position.
Have you decided where you fall yet? It's like The Beatles or Elvis debate - no one is 50-50.
Once you notice, you then have a better opportunity to evaluate which direction you need to move in.
Bottom line: In order to survive, we all need to thrive. It's just a matter of percentages.
All the best,
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