What to Do When You’re Stuck in the Survival Zone - Deepstash
What to Do When You’re Stuck in the Survival Zone

What to Do When You’re Stuck in the Survival Zone

Curated from: hbr.org

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Understanding the energy quadrants to manage energy

Understanding the energy quadrants to manage energy

With developments such as Covid-19, income inequality, and political polarisation, the demands on our energy are surpassing our capacity.

Four zones describe our energy levels:

  • The performance zone. When your energy is high and positive.
  • The survival zone. When your energy is high, but you're feeling threatened or devalued.
  • The burnout zone. When your energy is low, and you feel helpless or exhausted.
  • The renewal zone. When your energy is low but positive.

Many are spending their time in the survival and burnout zones. However, using certain practices can help to avoid these zones.


256 reads

Become a sprinter, not a marathoner

Become a sprinter, not a marathoner

A marathoner needs a measured pace where you can't push yourself to the limit. However, a sprinter can use 100% of themselves in every race and only stop when they've crossed the finish line.

People function best when they alternate between spending and renewing energy. Two of the most beneficial sources of regulation are:

  • Sufficient sleep - seven to eight hours.
  • Exercise that raises your heart rate.


240 reads

Replace self-observation for judgment

Self-judgement is because we allow our inner critic to make us feel less. Then we turn our judgment on others to try and feel better. But moving between the two extremes make us forever try to prove our worthiness at the expense of ourselves and others.

When you notice those feelings arise, try to only notice them without judging yourself.


214 reads

When you feel bad, it's not the full picture

If someone or something triggers a surge of negative emotion in you, take a deep breath and notice where in your body you feel tension.

Just noticing your emotion allows you to distance yourself from your reaction. Then turn your attention to becoming relaxed.


218 reads

Create a sage space for yourself

Think about a person, place, animal or activity that makes you feel safe and secure.

When you're in a difficult situation, use these steady sources of support.


226 reads

Take up a hobby

Take up a hobby

Take up something you enjoy for its own sake.

What activity do you love and have given up on, but you could do it as a source of renewal for an hour or two a week?


225 reads

Make someone else feel valued

Care and empathy is a powerful source of self-regulation and healing.

While we all long to feel valued and seen by others, we can't guarantee they'll do that for us. But we can appreciate others, and in turn, it always makes us feel better about ourselves.


249 reads



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