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Surviving, Arriving or Thriving – Which one describes you?

Resilience | 0 comments

I just wrote about this somewhere – the difference between surviving and thriving. And it keeps coming up in conversation, perhaps because people are really starting to be at an impasse with doing what they don’t love and not giving themselves the gift of doing what they are passionate about and living from that passion. Or they’ve been living their passion but just getting by financially or in other ways.

I remember hearing about this from an elder in circle several years ago and it being a huge aha for me. In communities/circles where there’s been oppression, people tend to call themselves survivors, and the question was asked, what if we call ourselves thrivers instead?

So which one are you doing right now? Surviving, arriving or thriving?

Don’t be surprised if you see yourself in more than one and possibly all 3. As spiritual entrepreneurs or entrepreneurs-in-waiting, we are multifaceted beings and certain aspects of you might be in survival while other aspects of you are thriving. It’s just good to know where you’re at in different areas of your life and business, so you can determine what’s next.


I’ve been a survivor, on many fronts. Just getting by. Better than feeling like life is hell, but just getting by. So what is survival really? It means you’re alive. It means you’re still breathing, you’re not in a coma and your basic needs are met. You might be living in poverty. You might be in a lot of pain emotionally or physically. You might even like yourself but you probably don’t love yourself. You might have people in your life or you might not. They may or may not be contributing to your happiness. Having a successful business is probably the last thing on your mind… although there are those who have a business and are still just surviving (that was me several years ago). Not much of a life if you ask me (and I’ve been there). If you stay in survival mode, true joy, happiness and purpose are elusive at best. You’re likely feeling as if you’ve hit a ceiling or a wall and can’t seem to get past it.


Now we’re talking. You’re getting somewhere. You’ve broken through the wall or the ceiling. Life is actually pretty good and starting to get even better. You’re feeling some sort of shift. The people in your life are increasingly supportive, positive, helpful, uplifting. You seem to laugh more than ever. You notice things falling into place more easily for you and maybe for your business. People may be starting to recognize you for your work and for who you are. You show up at events and strangers seem to know who you are. People want to be in your presence more often because they see you growing. You exude more confidence than you used to and people feel it. It’s easier to do what it takes to get clients. You seem lighter and brighter. Money seems to be flowing to you more easily. You have good friends who love you.


You’ve “arrived”. People are talking about you in a good way. Your business is making money. You’re having fun in your life. You can find clients and you have no problem taking whatever actions are required in your business. You have high self-confidence. You trust and love and accept yourself. You’re loving your life. You’re one of those positive people that other people just love to be around. You have a lot of energy and presence. People are magnetized to you. Happiness lives inside you. You are vibrating at a high frequency most of the time. You laugh and smile a lot. Life is awesome and business is booming.

Thriving means not just feeling your pulse and noticing your heart is still beating, but feeling the passion around WHY it’s still beating. Thriving is living in the love of who you are and having the prosperity to enjoy it.

Now… remember I said you can be in all 3 of these at once in different aspects of your life and business?

It’s also possible to be thriving in all areas.

Have a look at your life and business and see where you’re at. Think of at least 3 ways you could bring the energy of THRIVING into your life or business RIGHT NOW. And just really breathe in the awareness of where you’re at right now. No need to be perfect. No need to judge or beat yourself up. Just observe and love yourself in the moment.

Let me know how it goes! I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments below!

Love & Blessings,

Brenda MacIntyre, Medicine Song Woman



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About Brenda MacIntyre

About Brenda MacIntyre

Known by her indigenous name Medicine Song Woman, Brenda MacIntyre has shared her evocative melodic voice and fusion of reggae, rap and indigenous hand drum healing music with appreciative audiences of 30 to 3,000 across North America. The Toronto-based Juno Award-winning singer has been featured nationally on MuchMusic, CTV, CP24, APTN and most recently, Global and the front page of the Toronto Star.

Powered by her grief from losing her son to murder in 2016, Brenda MacIntyre pours her soulful voice over a confluence of indigenous hand drum healing, soft rap and conscious roots reggae in her album “Picking Up the Pieces,” released in September 2019.

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