What Kind of Bird are You?

We deal with problems and difficulties in different ways. We are like birds …

Spacers – avoiders – create a space between them and the problem:

  • Ostriches bury their heads in the sand. Unaware of those around them they pretend that the problem doesn’t exist and hope it will go away.
  • Swallows migrate for the winter. Rather than face the harshness of winter’s difficulties they fly away to somewhere more pleasant.

Stirrers – self-centred – make matters worse

  • Sparrow-hawks look out for their dinner. There may be a problem there but they take advantage of the weak, slow and feeble.
  • Seagulls make a lot of noise. They don’t help the situation –often bringing their friends and taking what they can.

Survivors – focus on self-preservation:

  • Ducks just float and bob along. The water may get rougher, their legs may be paddling harder: they appear to remain calm.
  • Eagles soar above the problems. They are aware they are there but they keep their distance and don’t get involved.

Supporters – think of others:

  • Hens protect their young. In any situation of danger the mother hen shields and protects her vulnerable young chickens.
  • Doves are gentle and peaceful. Where there are difficulties and problems they are proactive in bringing peace.

We see people exhibiting these characteristics in our work places, schools, churches, friendship groups and families… What sort of bird are you? Do you recognise bird characteristics in others?


  • To me this is a new idea: if you know differently please let me know!
  • It is almost certainly incomplete and flawed. I am not a sociologist or an ornithologist. Other birds could be added; ideas could be improved.
  • If it is valuable it is an extension of ideas of ‘fight’ or ‘flight’ – where we stand and fight problems or run away from them.

…I know that Ostriches don’t actually bury their heads in the sand.

2 thoughts on “What Kind of Bird are You?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: