Tag Archives: actions

Have you lost the budgie?

Our six-year-old was excited to receive a baby budgerigar as his first pet. Hand-reared and only a few weeks out of the nest, it was incredibly comfortable using him as a perch and was even beginning to feed directly from his hand. An inside bird, its young wings were not yet clipped and so the rules were very clear – it could be outside the cage only if all house doors were closed.

This worked well for the first week.

In the second week, our son asked if he could take the bird outside, thinking it may enjoy the trampoline. Of course, the collective response from parents and older siblings was negative, again identifying the fact it could fly and would most likely fly away. Desperate to introduce it to the excitement of the trampoline, our boy ignored the response and headed outdoors. The budgie obviously wasn’t as enthralled by the trampoline as its handler and promptly flew off. The ensuing door-to-door search failed to find the bird, leaving one six-year-old distraught with, hopefully, a clearer understanding of consequence of actions. His siblings were also affected as they too had warmed to this new family member yet were now bearing the weight of this outcome as well.

I reckon we’ve all lost a budgie at some point. We’ve ignored the facts, the advice and then had to endure the consequence of our actions. Our son seemed to understand the bird would fly away yet such was his intent, he chose to ignore the facts. Sometimes our intentions can be so strong, that we disregard the reality.

The metaphorical budgie for us could be a friendship, a career, a business opportunity or anything else we deem as valuable. Yes, we sometimes have to take a punt, have a go despite the known risks. But when the reality is perfectly clear and the negative outcome is unavoidable, we need to simply stop. If we proceed we are clearly stating we are prepared to accept the consequences both for ourselves AND on behalf of all others who will be impacted yet have had no control over our initial action. Are we really prepared to do that? Should we do that?

As a pet, it’s better for the bird to be restricted in its environment than seeking to survive in a world for which it is ill-equipped, despite our want. What’s your budgie?

LET HOPE RISE

Image credit: ionia / 123RF Stock Photo

Have you ever ‘fallen’ in love?

“Fallen in love” sounds a romantic thing to have had happen.

Certainly far better than being tripped into love, hoisted into love, harangued into love.

We often use the term “fallen” or “fell” to explain how we have come to be part of something. The truth is, though, that we actually choose to become involved even when high emotion is present.

My boys sometimes fall when they’re not focused on what’s happening around them. They’ve fallen out of trees, off playground equipment, down embankments, even into holes and ditches. Definitely no conscious choice was attached to these aspects of falling!

The word ‘fall’ implies a sense of inevitability, something beyond our control. Do we attach this word to our involvement to provide an escape clause, maybe as a reason to explain irrational behaviour, or perhaps to help justify the decision when the dream doesn’t eventuate? Whether it be a relationship, a business, an opportunity, we choose to participate and we choose our level of commitment.

Just because emotions are involved does not exclude our decision-making ability and the responsibility alongside. Yes, emotions can cloud our judgement and make the irrational seem rational, but they are our emotions for which only us can be held accountable.

When my boys fall out of a tree, it’s because they choose to climb the tree in the first place!

LET HOPE RISE

Image credit: nyul / 123RF Stock Photo

Take heed of the warning signs

My last post relayed my experience being part of a lock-down drama with an armed man on the loose. The odd thing about this event is that there were warning signs which I discounted.

Walking towards my destination to sample a recommended coffee-house, I came across a police car with lights flashing parked upon the footpath (sidewalk for my American friends). It wasn’t significantly unusual so it barely rated a second glance. As I turned the corner of this block, I was confronted with a second police car, and then a third just a few more metres ahead. Lights flashing, seemingly randomly, urgently parked. This was unusual. But I ignored it.

In retrospect, these three vehicles were warning of the unfolding emergency. However, despite noticing them and privately noting this was out of the ordinary, I gave them no further thought.

Are you like me and quick to dismiss the warning signs? Events, information or advice that is obviously present and within our realm of consciousness, yet we choose to discount. Could it be we assume the signs are not meant for us? Maybe we’re so super-confident of our chosen route that the warnings could in no way be relevant. Perhaps we are simply hoping that they don’t apply, wishing for our desired outcome.

Warning signs exist for a reason! We can choose to heed the warnings and amend our path accordingly or we can continue to discount their significance until the warnings transition to outcomes.

Don’t ignore the signs!

LET HOPE RISE

Image credit: arcady31 / 123RF Stock Photo

Defining failure

We often hear about failure. A business that has closed its doors. A relationship that hasn’t come together. An exam result not quite up to scratch.

But what is failure?

Is it simply not making the passing grade? Or is it when our expectations have not been met? How do you define failure in your life?

I came across a definition that challenges me; a definition that requires me to change my perspective. Here it is – failure is an opportunity to connect actions with consequences.

An opportunity to connect actions with consequences.

Look at the three key words – opportunity, actions, consequences.

An opportunity… not a life sentence.
… to connect actions… to understand something we have or have not done.
… with consequences… to realise the new set of circumstances.

Viewing failure this way will ultimately strengthen us. It will empower us. It can change our future.

There’s a much-quoted saying that insanity is doing the same thing but expecting a different result. Our new definition of failure means we can understand what we need to do differently to get a better outcome.

Let’s connect our actions with their consequences and have another go.

Let hope rise.