The other morning I was looking out the window to my backyard and saw a squirrel in the bird feeder. A couple of minutes later a flock of ducks (maybe 16 or so) landed and scared the squirrel away.
As the ducks were eating the seed that had fallen out of the feeder, the squirrel, clearly frustrated, started circling the flock. It was obvious that he wanted to eat but was afraid of the ducks (classic approach-avoidance).
Eventually, the squirrel took a risk and ran full blast into the flock scaring all the ducks except one. The remaining duck hunkered down when the others flew away but other than that he didn’t move. Once the dust settled, the lone sitting duck started eating again. Only this time, he didn’t have to compete for the food. The squirrel must have been traumatized because he didn’t resurface.
In reflecting on this wonderfully entertaining exchange, I see a similarity to my own situation. As you know from earlier stories I have experienced some anxiety in moving from Human Resources to writing. I have been very much like that squirrel circling to get in, to get the prize.
I am happy to report that today I feel like the sitting duck. Somewhat vulnerable yet confident in taking the risk and standing alone. Why this sudden change?
I am now being paid to write! I am a Human Resources writer for the Chicago edition of examiner.com, another step toward a career in writing.
I’m sure there will still be times I feel like the squirrel, but I’m reveling in being a duck today.
P.S. If you want to read my articles, they can be found at examiner.com under Business News and then Careers and Workplace or you can go directly to my page at http://www.examiner.com/human-resources-in-chicago/pam-waits. Initially, I will be posting two articles per week.
What victories (large or small) are you celebrating?