What It Takes to Thrive
Many of us do not feel like we are thriving. Alive, living, doing OK is one thing, but thriving is another. If you are asking yourself what it takes to thrive,I am happy to offer you a perspective after decades of helping people find their way to their own expressions of what thriving means to them.
Empowered Self Relating considers thriving an inside job. Like a tree, our thriving must come from the inside out. It is the health of our roots that allows for our canopy, our incredible fruiting, flowering, the health of our foliage so to speak.
In our very accelerated 21st century lives our inner harmony can often be dependent upon our ability to regulate our nervous systems and integrate the many often disparate experiences of life we are constantly moving toward or from.
Learning to regulate your autonomic nervous system is still a fairly new concept. Neuroscience in the last decade has shown us how our nervous system function affects our physical and emotional health. Our ancestors didn’t have to worry so much about becoming their own nervous system gurus because their neuro chemical lives, though under constant threat, were not under sustained siege like ours today. Their threats ebb and flowed or ate them for lunch.
This ebb and flow allowed our ancestor’s nervous systems to come back into balance even after the most terrifying instances. Their rituals and close-knit community structures also helped them transform their traumas and stress.
Today’s sustained moment to moment stress accumulates without allowing for downtime or a true rebalancing. We can easily lose our ability to meet our day to day moments afresh with the tempo, pace, intensity, or, lack of, that is required. Instead our systems get stuck on high overdrive or burnout after decades of overdrive and become stuck in lethargy. Keeping our nervous system balanced is key not only for our overall health, but the sheer quality of our lives.
In fact, I know how important this is, I offer a FREE e-course with a proven embodied technique I developed for balancing the nervous system.It takes under a minute and it works!This technique is used by professionals worldwide with their clients, in schools, at disaster sites, post-terrorist attacks and group therapy settings. Believe me, you owe it to yourself to learn this regulation technique and to pass it on to your friends and families. Just click this link/button.
What does this have to do with thriving?
We have become conditioned in Western societies not to thrive but to burnout. We learn from a young age to go from one experience to the next. We are trained to find the in-between stages of life boring! Well, I am here to tell you that regulation and integration are sexy. They are the fountains of youth and well being. They provide the stepping stones that allow us to bounce forward in life rather than fall backward into habituated cycles.
It is the integration of our change processes along the way that allows the unevenness of our experiences to be manageable and even beautiful.
And again, integrating our experiences can do a great deal to mitigate the effects of accumulated stress.
What does integration look like?
It involves taking time to space out our experiences rather than just experiencing the go-go of one after the next. Sometimes we can’t avoid this pacing in our lives. In these cases, we need to carve out some ongoing downtime in our schedules to: relax, relate positively to ourselves and do something that is integrative to our whole self, such as: meditation, movement practice, yoga, breathing exercises, gardening, hiking, or stillness-evoking activities. Some people find therapy, coaching, churchgoing, and music-making also important ways to reset and come back into alignment with their fuller selves.
Whatever authentically allows your stress to melt is crucial.The key to integration is not the doing but the being that it affords you.
The same is true of our relationship to other people. When weare in need of regulation or integration, it is important to be around people we can experience authentically without stress!
I know from years and years of experience working with people around the world, regulation and integration when up-taken on a regular basis through our root systems fuel our trees of life to thrive. This brings a feeling of resilience that translates into knowing greater empowerment, satisfaction, enoughness and joy.
Remember, when its hard to find the time for regulation or integration,we need our thriving selves and our planet needs thriving humans!