Survive or Thrive – is it a choice?

I don’t know about you but I love the television programme “The Island.”  You know the one; Bear Grylls dumps a dozen or so volunteers onto an island with little more than a few essentials whilst we sit back and watch the drama unfold.

OK, so the cynics amongst us can see through the clever editing. And isn’t it always strange how, just before they all starve to death, they happen to stumble over some poor crocodile – who seems to be drugged-up to me – just waiting to be slaughtered for the campfire.   Whatever we think, it is obviously not that easy to survive in this harsh environment.  However, whilst some people hardly survive; a few people start to thrive.

Some of the island’s volunteers seem to be happy to sunbath their increasingly emaciated bodies whilst others are working hard hunting and building.  The avid viewers of the programme can testify that this is the biggest reason for conflict – people not pulling their weight!  It seems to me that some people take the challenge head-on whilst others feel, for some reason, that they cannot contribute.

This got me thinking about our working life.  In this fast-paced, ever-changing, competitive world we need to be constantly questioning our own personal contribution.  We see people who survive their careers and see those who thrive.  But why; is this by accident, luck, business acumen, intelligence, hard work or attitude to change? Of course, there are all sorts of reasons, but I can’t help thinking of the famous quote attributed to Charles Darwin, “It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change.”

Just like ‘The Island’ and in real life the people who thrive are the ones with confidence and belief in their actions to make a difference and lead people.

These essential skills are sometimes a natural gift, or learnt over time, but are often not seen by the people who own them.

This is the exact reason why successful people use personal coaching to help them see what they can’t see. It helps them build their confidence and belief in their own abilities. It takes them from surviving to thriving in their careers.

Again, to quote another great thinker of our past, Mr Albert Einstein, “We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”

So, is to survive or thrive a choice?  Well, you have to choose if you carry on doing what you do, or step back, think, and engage with people who can help you develop