12 Most Insightful Things People Can Learn from Birds
Although I’m probably the last person you will ever find camping in the wild, there are so many things about nature that fascinate me. Birds probably top that list. I can spend hours (or in all honesty, many minutes) watching their natural grace and being in awe of their beauty and form.
Mostly, I love birds because they inspire me to ponder life. I actually had to cull my list of bird-taught insights to get down to these twelve life lessons that birds can teach us.
1. Birds, like people, come in all sizes, shapes and strengths
Every bird, like every person, has their own unique beauty, strengths and weaknesses. Thank goodness not everyone is the same, it would be a really boring world if we were. So embrace your differences.
2. Sometimes change is necessary so embrace it
Birds are smart enough to migrate and find better conditions when food becomes scarce in the winter and conditions get harsh. People need to learn from birds how to be flexible and make changes when things aren’t working the way they should be.
3. There are strengths and advantages in numbers
There is a reason birds fly in flocks. It helps them elude predators. It conserves energy. When people work together in a group and in harmony, they are like a flock of birds, getting the work done in the most efficient way. When people travel in groups they are less likely to be attacked.
4. It’s okay and even wise to spend time on your own
While birds generally travel in flocks, we also see them on their own. Even the best team player needs time on their own every once in a while.
5. Get a bird’s eye view
Things look different when viewed from up high. Birds soar and look for prey because it is easier to spot from up above. Sometimes we need to step back to gain the right perspective and see the whole picture.
6. Learn to keep your balance
Birds are able to keep their balance in strong winds and oftentimes even standing on one foot. Life is full of moments that have the potential to knock us down. The stronger we are both mentally and physically, the easier it is for us to keep our balance.
7. Who cares if someone is watching
Birds don’t care if people are watching them, they just go about their business. People can also learn to be less worried about what everyone is thinking or saying about them and instead just do what it is they feel is right and what they are meant to do.
8. Keep pecking until you get what you want
I haven’t seen many birds give up quickly. Even when they are chased away, they will often return over and over again to the same spot to try and get what they want. When we really want something or if something is important to us, we need to keep at it and keep pecking away until we achieve what we set out to.
9. Make yourself a home
Everyone needs a home base, someplace to come back to and unwind. Make sure that making yourself a home is a priority. It does not matter whether you will be moving in a few months, a few years or never. You owe it to yourself to build yourself a home. (Note that I said home, not house.)
10. Don’t be afraid to take from others
Most of us don’t like taking things, especially help from other people. Taking is okay. There is no shame in it. Just remember to also give back to others what you can, even if it’s just a song or a smile.
11. Spread your wings and fly
Many of us have gotten into a rut of limiting ourselves, our lives and our potential. We feel burdened and weighted down by day to day life and forgot that we are one small flap away from a change. Don’t be afraid. The world and your destiny is yours for the taking.
12. The crap that’s in your life is not always about you
Our lives are not just roses. Sometimes we are crapped on, even repeatedly. Or at least that’s how we feel. I don’t think there was ever a bird who aimed for a specific person’s head or someone’s recently washed car. It was about them and their needs. Period.
Too often we get into a cycle of believing that everyone and everything is conspiring against us. Next time you find your previously spotless car gifted with bird poop, or someone is mean or nasty, take a deep breath and remember it’s not always about or aimed at you.
Nature is wise and birds are just one example of how much nature has to teach us about life. What other lessons have YOU learned from birds or from nature?
Featured image courtesy of gynti_46 licensed via Creative Commons.