There’s no need for survival mode

A while back I came to the realisation that unless your basic needs like food, air and shelter etc. are at risk then any mistake you make or growth point you encounter is not ‘the end of the world’.

You can bounceback and get on with life. And that’s it. Life is as life does and like someone once said ‘it doesn’t stop till you’re dead’.

If you’re going into survival mode over small things that are just part of life that have no significant impact to your basic needs, you’ll undoubtedly struggle in life.

I think a useful thing to do is acknowledge you may have fears/triggers for your survival mode/panic button to go off but to check in and ask does it make sense to have the same reaction as though your life is at risk?

Survival mode is draining, our lives aren’t at risk in the way they used to be.

On learning to voice your needs

I just googled not being able to voice your needs and there were about 1,220,000,000 results.

Being able to voice your needs is an important part of life. If you can’t say what you need, you probably won’t get it.

If you’ve ever been that person you might have been lucky enough to find someone that gets you. Not in any romantic sense but just someone that understands you even when you’re not able to find the words. That kind of person comes into your life through you being open and vulnerable enough to voice your needs.

It could be as simple as letting someone know that you need space, at first the person might be surprised or not take it well. But over time a good friend or someone that cares about you will understand that at certain times you need to be alone. And it won’t become an issue, they won’t try and make you feel bad or tell you that you have to have to talk now. They will listen and respect your needs.

On the flipside, people that aren’t able to voice their needs might end up falling into feeling misunderstood or uncared for and then carrying that feeling around them everywhere they go. But more often than not, that feeling isn’t true at all. It only feels true because you’re not saying what you need.

Vulnerability and having your needs met

Do you really know what you want?

Often we go around telling people what we do want and even what we don’t want. Doing so can help you feel like you know and understand yourself because you’re able to articulate your needs.

What can end up happening is, when the needs you voiced are met, you come to find that it’s not what you really wanted at all.

Suddenly, you find yourself going back on your previous statement or displaying emotions like frustration or annoyance at the person who has done what you asked.

For example, you may say that you want to be left alone. However, when everyone leaves you end up getting upset.

The truth of that matter is that you didn’t really want to be left alone. Perhaps, it’s that you felt misunderstood, wanted someone to sit with you and listen or just wanted comfort. However, voicing these kinds of needs isn’t always easy because they show your vulnerable side.

It’s much easier to just say that you want to be alone, particularly when you’re not sure if the people around you are capable of meeting your real needs.

But, if you give the people around you some credit and allow yourself to be vulnerable for just a moment, you might find that you’re able to get exactly what you need.

The build up

It’s easy to talk about things that are easy.

But when it comes to comes to feelings, wants and needs, things often get a little more challenging.

Often problems will arise, simply because you didn’t speak up and let the other person know how you felt or what you needed. When you hold things in, they rarely go away, they just build up over time.

So, maybe 6 months later when you feel angry and frustrated towards someone you won’t even consider that maybe things could have turned out differently, if only you had said ‘I want you to make more of an effort’ instead of keeping quiet.

Granted people won’t always meet your needs, even if you desperately want them too.

But you’re better off speaking up and giving the other person a chance, than just holding things in and ending up disappointed that people can’t read your mind.

Tending to your needs

Now might be the perfect time.

If you find yourself stressed, anxious or overwhelmed, you might also feel a little helpless.

But the chances are you actually have a pretty good idea of what you can do to help yourself.

Rest, put your phone down, turn off your tv or computer, phone a friend, stretch…

However, despite knowing what to do and knowing what will help, we refuse to tend to our own needs.

People will often say things like I don’t have time to rest or I’m too busy to take a break.

But the truth is that mindset comes from not valuing taking care of your well being.

It might feel strange at first but it’s much better for you to regularly rest from life than to be forced to rest every time you work yourself into the ground.

 

Wanting to be included

Sometimes we want to be included because we want to join in and be apart of it.

Other times we want to be included for the sake of being included.

We want to know that we’re being thought of, that someone wants us to be involved and maybe a small part of it is the feeling of external validation.

It feels good to be picked and to feel wanted.

Even when you don’t actually want to join in.

Everything must go!

There’s a lesson in almost everything.

How much stuff are you holding onto that doesn’t feel good.

Think about who or what you’re following on social media, what are you subscribed to, the contents of your closet or home space.

How does it make you feel?

If it doesn’t feel good, why not?

Furthermore, why are you still holding onto it?

A think a bi-annual (if not seasonal) life cull is a useful way to ensure that you’re only letting the good stuff stay. It’s important to be strict when you cull or else you end up keeping things for no real reason, you have to be honest with yourself about what you actually want or need in your life.

Do you need those slingbacks from 6 years ago that you’ve only worn once?

Do you need to keep following that stranger who is friends with that super hardworking, inspiring and stylish woman (who is also a stranger)?

Or how about that book you know you’ll never read or those old bedsheets that are just taking up space?

If it’s not something you use, know you will use or doesn’t serve any purpose in your life aside from being clutter then there’s not much use holding onto it.

When you’re going on a journey, you can’t take everything with you.