Survival software used to keep us alive! Why we need to adapt it now…

For over 2.5 million years we were all born with pre-installed software; the survival software. It used to help us sense danger and kept us alive! It was a case of kill or be killed. It was always on the lookout for what might hurt us, so we could decide to fight or to flee from the danger. Our brains evolved quickly to learn from bad experiences and to store the memories; and to learn slowly from good experiences.

In today’s world, it is not as useful for us. It makes us see bad before good. It keeps us still looking for situations where things might go wrong or where there is a possible threat to us. Our brains automatically trigger negative feelings because we react more quickly to bad things than we do to equivalent good things.

It makes sense really if you think about it. The pain of loss is stronger than the positive emotion of possessing that same thing. Being heartbroken feels a million times worse than the happiness of being in a harmonious relationship. It takes about five good actions to make up for the one bad one you were responsible for. The same in financial transactions; the pain of losing £xxx is a lot more intensely felt than the joy of making the same £xxx.

This software is deeply embedded in all of us. We are great at surviving but perhaps not always as good at being happy and content.

The good news is that we can change this behaviour. We need to outsmart our brain and give ourselves a “factory reset” if you like. How can we do this?


We need to cultivate new positive habits. We need to be proactive and we need to repeat these positive habits on a daily basis. The key to this new habit forming is continuity. Apparently it takes about seventy days for a new habit to become internalised; for a change to take place in your neural pathways. Hence; the key is continuity.

It is up to us as individuals to decide what our new habits will be, but let’s do this. Let’s start and let’s really change our habits to empower ourselves to live a happier and more fulfilled life.

I’ll tell you what I’m going to do once I clear my chest infection. I’m going to start doing my exercise in the morning and not in the evening when time is “rushed”. I have the time in the morning and I’ve just given myself a whole bunch of waffly excuses over the years — “I’m stiff as a board”; “I haven’t woken up yet”; “I’m just not a morning exercise person” etc etc.

What new habits can you embrace to really bring joy and abundance into your life? To stop feeling like you’re walking in treacle with each day just flopping into the next one?

“take the first step”…