There is a mental toughness we need to be successful. Developing a mental toughness does not happen over night, but anyone can possess this attribute with a little patience and discipline.

It is interesting watching the growth of a flower. Depending on the conditions, flowers are thriving, surviving, or dying depending on what is within them. Please let me explain. Flowers need the proper environment and nutrients to grow.

We are similar to flowers when it comes to our leadership development. What we are made of will determine our success. It is who we are, the decisions we make, who we hang around, and the principles that guide our lives. All these things will dictate if we are thriving, surviving, or dying.

So what’s on the inside of you? Are you made of the “good stuff?”

Before we discuss how to put the “good stuff” on the inside of you, let’s discuss the difference from thriving, surviving, and dying.

What’s the Difference?

It is important to know if you are currently thriving, surviving, or dying to determine the direction of your future.

- Thriving is defined as living a prosperous life, which means you are meeting your life goals, profiting with your work endeavors, developing healthy and productive relationships, and living a peaceful life of integrity.

- Surviving can be defined a living a normal or good life as we described in the Visualize Your Success. Surviving is settling. Surviving is staying in a job position where you know there isn’t room for growth. It is living by the standards of others rather than being who you were created to be. Doing enough to just get by is surviving. There’s nothing wrong with surviving, but if you are surviving you are one step from dying.

- Dying doesn’t actually mean you are literally dying, but it is the state of living in hopelessness. Those in the dying phase don’t feel they will ever be successful. These individuals cannot see any form of prosperity in their life. Although opportunities are all around these people, they usually focus on the negative and say things such as, “I never can get a break.”

Now you know the difference between the three, are you thriving, surviving, or dying?

Wherever you are currently, know you can change your position right now. It all starts with your attitude. Humans are the only beings with this ability. We can fail one day, but enjoy great success the next day because of our attitude, intelligence, and discipline.

5 Ways to Thrive

I don’t need to give anyone instruction in how to survive or die, but I would like to share 5 ways to thrive in any aspect of your life from business to your personal relationships. Here are 5 ways to thrive:

1. Eat right. We are whatever we put in our bodies. Eating right doesn’t have to be complicated. You just need to simply put together a plan for eating healthy and avoid foods high in saturated fats, trans fats, cholesterol, salt, and added sugars. Instead of eating these foods replace them with a variety of healthy options such as fruits, vegetables, lean meats, beans, peas, and whole-grain products. Make your calories count. This will help with helping you thrive.

2. Think right. To develop a mental toughness, we need to think right. Rarely do you see successful people saying and thinking words such as “I can’t.” It’s just not part of their process of thinking or vocabulary. If they are unable to do something, they will find someone who can. These people are constantly surrounding themselves with talented people who think right and can help them meet their life goals.

Being the president, owner, or chief executive officer (CEO) of anything doesn’t mean that a man or woman knows it all, but it means they are able to devise great teams of people to meet the common goal. Thriving has everything to do with thinking right.

Yes, there will be “bad” days, but a person thinking right will use those days as opportunities to grow. Whether you are a college student, just out of prison, retired, an executive, or a stay at home mother, you will need to think right to bring some form of structure to your day. With better thinking and structure, success will be inevitable.

3. Relate right. If you are not thinking right, you will have difficult time discovering positive relationships to help push your life goals. But one you have taken care of your thinking, you must actively seek out relationships promoting your growth. I do believe we were created to serve, which means “Life is not about me.” However, it is so important to seek out and keep good company. You do need to help others grow, but you cannot help someone else grow if you haven’t developed yourself. Choose healthy relationships to help you thrive. Any relationship fighting against your goals of growing and prospering, I would limit or remove those relationships.

4. Move right. The word thriving alone suggests there is some form of movement occurring. Another intricate part of our thriving is keeping our bodies healthy by moving. It is important to exercise our minds, but also to exercise our physical bodies. Many people make New Year’s resolutions of exercising more around this time of the year, but only keep that resolution for a few months if not only a few days or weeks.

As a physical therapist, I understand the challenges of working out. But you have to make it fun. Do something you love to do such as dancing, walking in the park with your love one, wrestling with your kids, hiking, rock climbing, martial arts, standing more at work, cleaning (ok, cleaning may not be fun), playing the Wii, playing on playground with kids, biking, etc. I believe you get the point. Instead of making excuses, raise your heart rate and just move your body. If you aren’t healthy physically and mentally, you will have problems thriving with the mental toughness needed to bring you success. Your ability to thrive with a mental toughness depends on your ability to move your body.

5. Act right. When everything else in our foundation is together, then we will follow those things aforementioned with right action. Right thinking leads to right actions. Right action includes the following:

- Dealing with people,

- Work ethic,

- Communicating, and

- Transitioning to new personal and professional opportunities.

Whether it is your personal or professional life, you need to discover if you are thriving, surviving, or dying. Don’t settle for where you are in life. Push yourself by stepping outside of your comfort zone and build a mental toughness within you to promote consistent success.

Peace and Prosperity,

Bryant Hall, Sr.

MTN Universal, LLC

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