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Survive – Alive – Thrive

Navigating the Journey from Loss to Hope to Happiness

Foreword by M. Melyn Galbreath
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Loss isn’t one-size-fits-all. It comes in a million different forms—and all of them hurt. Whatever your situation, there is hope: you are not alone, you will get through this, and you can experience true joy again!

An estimated two-hundred million Americans face the pain and confusion of loss every year, and most of us have no idea how to handle it. We’re thrown into the deep end of grief without a life preserver, desperately trying to stay afloat in a sea of shock, anger, frustration, heartbreak, and hopelessness.

 Mark Negley knows what it’s like to face the pain of loss and fight to build a new life from the ashes. Over the past thirty years, he has faced cancer, raised a special needs child, lost his beloved mother, nearly lost his wife in a car accident, and supported her through depression and mental health issues resulting from her brain injuries. Tragically, in 2016, Mark received the biggest blow of all when his wife of twenty years took her own life.

 Frustrated by the lack of relatable resources to help navigate his grief recovery, Mark set out to redefine the loss experience. After five years of research, in-depth interviews with loss survivors, and leading grief groups, he realized that the problem isn’t how we experience grief; the problem is that traditional models make it seem too formulaic. He found that grief recovery isn’t a linear progression from one clearly defined stage to the next; rather, it’s a series of concentric circles—like ripples in a pond—that emanate from a center point of impact. Those circles form three “interconnected” phases of recovery called Survive, Alive, and Thrive.

 In Survive-Alive-Thrive: Navigating the Journey from Loss to Hope to Happiness, Mark Negley takes you on a journey through his loss experiences, using his story and the stories of several others to teach his revolutionary new model of grief recovery. You don’t have to walk this difficult road alone. With the help of Mark and others, you can navigate from loss to hope and then to happiness. You don’t have to settle for survival! Set your sights higher and learn how to thrive again!

"Coping with Setbacks and Loss" from Chapter 12

There’s no way to sugarcoat it: life is freakin’ hard. It punches you in the face, waits for you to get up, and then punches you again. That is the nature of life. In fact, I’ve written this book through the spring and summer of 2020, a year that has been marked by an unprecedented global pandemic. This has been a hard year for many, many people around the world. Not only have hundreds of thousands lost their lives to COVID-19, but exponentially more have lost their incomes, jobs, health insurance, personal freedoms, and any sense of normalcy or security. In short, many people have lost their hope this year.

As I watch the news or check in with friends, I see that people are living in fear right now. They’re “hunkered in a bunker,” waiting for the storm to pass. However, those of us who have been through terrible loss know a secret: even when the storm passes, another will roll in sooner or later. Again, that’s the nature of life: it punches us in the face . . . repeatedly. I recently heard legendary Rocky star Sylvester Stallone—no stranger to getting punched in the face—say, “Nobody punches harder than life. Life is undefeated. You can’t beat it. You just have to go on the defensive.”[1] If you’re reading this book, you already know that, because you or someone you love has just been knocked down by loss and you’re on your knees searching for answers and support. The life you have known, the relationships and balance that once brought you such comfort, have been shaken, and now you’re struggling.

 

 

Mark Negley’s passion for helping others through difficult life experiences has led him to serve as executive director of Survive-Alive-Thrive.org, a non-profit initiative inspired to provide insight, community, and emotional support for those who have experienced loss. His revelatory book, Survive-Alive-Thrive: Navigating the Journey from Loss to hope to Happiness, redefines the loss experience and provides a revolutionary new model for understanding grief recovery for the millions of Americans who suffer loss each year.

As president of PondHouse Management Consulting Group, Mark leverages his twenty years of senior leadership experience across media, ecommerce, retail, and technology markets to help his business clients pursue revenue and income growth. His track record of success as a hands-on entrepreneur and strategic consultant includes building new business start-up ventures and leading corporate initiatives where he has been recognized as an innovator and visionary.  

Mark’s commitment to his Christian faith has inspired him to share the power of God’s love while engaging in leadership roles in several marketplace ministries, such as The New Canaan Society, Youth Impact Ministries, and Give Me an Answer. As a compelling public speaker and podcast host, Mark has enjoyed sharing stories from his journey at conferences, retreats, churches and with small groups and gatherings across the country.

Raised in the suburbs of Chicago, Mark is a widower and proud father of twenty-four-year-old son, Andersen. He was blessed to re-marry in 2020 and currently resides in Franklin, TN, with his wife, Melyn.