I wrote this back in March 2010, but wanted to share it with you today. I think it still applies.
Okay, so we have a big problem at our house. The birds are back, but that’s not the problem at all. I love them, to both watch and listen to them in the yard. They are melodic reminder of the coming warmth, and I am all for that.But, Mr. Robin is having issues. And herein likes the problem. For the past few weeks, Mr. Robin has been coming to my front door every morning and pecking at the kick plate at the base of the door. He stands there, and for at least ten minutes a day, he essentially bangs his head against the door. I’ve analyzed the situation and have come to the conclusion that he is playing the dating game. Although I am no expert in the behaviour patterns of birds, I think he sees his reflection in the kick plate, and is making advances on himself in the hopes of procreation.
And how’s that working out for him?
For the first few days, Rudy would stand at the door, and growl and scratch at the floor, as if he was sending a message to the bird. I would go to the door, and gently knock at the base, until he flew away. I just could not bear to think this cute creature was going to have a head injury because of his desire to find a mate. Now you understand the challenges I face when working from a home office.
After a few weeks of this, Rudy gave up. It was as if he said, “Okay guy, you want to bang you head against the door, fill your boots. I will be lying on my leather couch. I’m done trying to talk sense to you.”
I gave up too, fatigued from jumping from my office chair every time I heard the noise at the base of the door.
Now, let’s apply this to life. How many of us have acted like the robin at one point or another in our life? Day after day, we come back to the same place and bang our heads against the wall, expecting to get a different result. Days, weeks, months and years pass, and all we have to show for it is a headache and no progress, no forward movement in our lives. We look at our own reflection and that is the only part of the picture we see. We only see our story. We never turn away from the kick plate of life and see there is a big world out there, waiting for us to participate and contribute our talents. We get stuck in our old patterns of thinking and worrying, and assuming we have it all figured out. And with every bang against the door, we convince ourselves that we were right, there is nothing else out there for me.
And, just like the robin, we have people who approach us and gently say, “Ah-em, excuse me? Did you know you’re banging your head against the wall? May I suggest a better approach?”
And many times, how do we respond? Just like the robin. “This is my head and my reflection, and I feel comfortable banging my head every day thank you very much. I am scared to turn around and see the real world, so I will continue to do what I know, and that is injure myself. Now, leave me alone, my head hurts too much to talk to you!”
And slowly, the people drift away. They tried, and they failed, so they move on, and leave you to your head banging. Much like Rudy and I, they move on because it appears you don’t want to be helped.
Now, back to Mr. Robin. If he turned away from the kick plate, and instead looked for a live Mrs. Robin, what would he get? Woo hoo! Candlelight dinners, movies, long walks home and some mini robins in the spring. If he only knew that the unknown was so much better than the kick plate. His resistance is holding him back from the beautiful possibilities of life.
If you find yourself banging your head against the kick plate of life, pause for a moment. Do you have to keep doing it just because it is all you know? Take a deep cleansing breath, and turn around. The world is waiting…