The eagle has the longest life span among birds. It can live up to 70 years. However, to reach this stage the eagle must make some hard hitting decisions.
After flying for 40 long years, the eagle’s talons are no longer sharp enough to catch the prey it needs as food. The long sharp beak is bent…it’s old aged & thick wings become heavy & get stuck to the chest. This makes it difficult for the eagle to fly. Can you imagine the torture of a bird when it cannot fly? It’s similar to the torture that you & I undergo when we know we cannot walk!
The eagle is now left with only two choices in life. To die or to begin a process of change that lasts 150 days. The process is painful. It requires the eagle to fly to a mountain top and nest itself there throughout the change. The eagle then starts knocking it’s beak out till the beak is out. And then it waits patiently for a new beak to grow. The next stage is for the eagle to pluck it’s talons out. The eagle does this and waits for a new set of talons to grow. The last stage is for this majestic bird to pluck it’s feathers out. Then wait patiently for the feathers to grow.
After 5 months of this step by step change, the eagle is “reborn” and is ready to take flight and live for another 30 years.
When I read this, I had goose bumps. The sheer physical torture that an eagle goes through to live 30 years is a lesson for all of us. Change has become an inevitable part of all our lives. Yet, how many of us focus on whether that change is doing something positive for us or not!!! The eagle’s story brought out some paradigms in life for me.
Decision Making – in life we all reach situations where we have to take decisions. We all do take decisions in life. The question is are they timely decisions or are they procrastinated ones? Timely decisions help us in moving ahead with actions…procrastinated ones may not have the same impact or worse, may not have any impact at all. The decision to change something in life is always a difficult one…as we are habituated to a comfort zone. Very often the change itself may not be a difficult one to implement, it is our mental paradigm that makes it difficult.
Emotional Strength – this is the mental paradigm I referred to earlier. And I will narrate a personal example…am sure many of us go through this in our lives. One of the changes I implemented in my life was to get up early in the morning…to get a head start & finish my morning chores. Now the moment my alarm rang in the morning, the first thought was “let me snooze for another 5 minutes :)”…sounds familiar? That’s when I realized the earth’s gravitational pull is the strongest in the morning…it just refuses to let you get from your bed…:):):). However, Mother Earth was just an excuse for my weakness. I had to condition myself to be mentally strong to push myself out of bed and start my day. So, emotional strength comes from getting rid of this deadly ailment called “excusitis”
Change Paradigms – very often when we focus on bringing about change in our lives, we focus on the end objective so frequently, that we lose out on the step by step approach to change. Change is not something that happens overnight. Change is a process…remember the eagle & the 150 day process. It has been said that for any change to be effectively implemented by us, we need to follow the process for 21 days at least. It takes the human mind 21 days to condition itself. After that the process is easy…your mind demands it! It is those 21 days that we need to focus on everyday acts that will help us condition ourselves.
Single Handed Approach – I have also realized that any change that I implement in life must start with me & me alone. Like the eagle sits alone to go through the painful process…what I need to do in my life, I need to do it alone. The others around me will support me, give me words of encouragement, stand by me when I feel the pains & the pressure…but, the emotions, feelings & experiences I go through are mine & mine alone. I need to be one with myself to learn from those experiences. It is a single handed approach!
Many a times, in order to survive we need to implement a process of change. We sometimes must get rid of old memories, habits, traditions & experiences. Only when we are free from past burdens, are we free to enjoy the present and work towards the future. Our lives are not determined by what happens around us, but by how we react to what happens around us. Not by what life brings to us…but by what attitude we bring to life. We all reach a stage in life when we have to make noticeable changes in our lifestyle, work, approach & attitude. So…let us change to affect that change!!!
Have a soaring day ahead :):):)