Navigating Survival Mode: The Mental and Emotional Burden on Money and Business

In the journey of life, we all face moments when we find ourselves in survival mode. 

Maybe because there isn’t a steady stream of work, you’re financially under pressure, or you are on the verge of a relationship breakdown. 

These challenging times can be emotionally and mentally draining, often casting a shadow on your financial well-being and business endeavours. 

As a coach, it’s essential to understand and address the intricate interplay between the mental and emotional burden of survival mode and its impact on money and business. 

Today, I thought it would be important to delve into these aspects and explore strategies and questions to help both you and your clients weather the storm.

Understanding Survival Mode:

We have all experienced survival mode, where you feel heightened stress and anxiety which is triggered by various life challenges. Maybe for you, it is a lack of clients, loss of inspiration, or feeling burnt out.

This mode often leads to a fight-flight-freeze response, where you prioritize immediate survival over long-term goals. 

The Mental and Emotional Toll:

 Let’s address what actually happens in your mind and body during this period of time. 

Survival mode can be mentally exhausting. Constantly worrying about making ends meet or the future of one’s business can lead to high levels of stress and anxiety. Sleepless nights, hiding away from the world. Struggling to concentrate. 

Clients in survival mode may struggle with thought patterns, such as self-doubt, fear, and hopelessness. These emotions can make it difficult to see opportunities or make rational decisions. It is also challenging to switch them off unless you have tools and techniques to help. 

Prolonged survival mode can take a toll on mental health, potentially leading to depression, burnout, or other psychological issues. Coming back from this point takes a. Lot. of. Work. Sometimes it’s easier to catch it and work on it before it gets to this point. 

The Burden on Money and Business:

Financial worries often intensify during survival mode. Clients may face income loss, mounting debt, or uncertainty about the viability of their business. That can then lead to questioning everything. 

Fear and uncertainty can lead to decision fatigue or decision paralysis in both personal and business matters. Clients may avoid making necessary financial choices, hindering progress and growth. Maybe it isn’t decision paralysis but just decision fatigue but this has an impact on change.

Survival mode can also strain personal relationships, as the stress from financial and emotional burdens spills over into interactions with all our relationships.


As a coach, I am surprised how many coaches don’t have basic financial literacy skills. These skills help you to make informed decisions during tough times. I’d encourage everyone in business to learn about budgeting, debt management, and long-term financial planning. 

Challenge thought patterns and help you to reframe their perspectives. Check out the questions of growth for what specific questions to ask. 

Lean on your support systems. That’s why we have classes each and every week of the year so that you can lean on us during stressful times, so we can help you get back inspired and energised about business. 


  1. What is it specifically that is creating you to perceive survival?

  1. How does what you listed in question 1, serve you? Keep asking until you are certain the benefits and drawbacks are equal. 

These questions will begin to shift your mind from survival to thriving. And from the fight-flight-fright response to more long-term vision for your business and your life. 

We can sometimes stay stuck in this perpetual loop of survival, and it takes work to get you thinking differently. However, it takes energy and effort to survive.

So what would you prefer to do? The work to stay the same or the work to shift your thinking?