Survival mode is a state of being that many of us with a severe mental illness have experienced over prolonged periods of our lives. It is a form of Hell…

Survival mode is a state of being that many of us with a severe mental illness have experienced over prolonged periods of our lives. It is a form of Hell…

“Biologically and evolutionarily, all “negative,” or distressing, emotions, like fear, disgust, or anxiety, can be thought of as “survival-mode” emotions: they signal to the body and brain that our survival and well-being may be at risk, and are specifically designed to motivate behaviors and bodily responses that can most effectively deal with those risks and threats.

Survival-mode states can be said to biologically oppose states of “homeostasis,” which are states of physical and psychological balance. In a state of homeostasis, we sense or perceive no pressing survival-related needs, such as a hunger for food, and no apparent survival-related threats, such as people flourishing knives in our vicinity. When we’re in homeostasis, that is, we feel physically and emotionally safe.” (Psychology Today)

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