Many of us loved the flying scene with Bernard and Bianca in Walt Disney’s The Rescuers. Wilbur the Albatross dons his aviator goggles and takes off with the two mice in a dizzying drop from a New York skyscraper.
Albatrosses are splendid birds: their wingspan, their elegance in flight, their intrepid dives.
Some of us in our areas of interest are albatrosses.
They may have difficulty taking off with their cumbersome wings. On the ground, they are clumsy and awkward, and that’s how we think of them. But when circumstances allow them to take flight, they are utterly majestic. Albert Einstein said:
Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life thinking that it is stupid.
Who of those around you deserves to be looked at it whilst in full flight?
The parable of the little rabbit appears in the book “Soar with your Strengths”. On his first day at school, the little rabbit starts learning to run and jump. He goes home delighted with how well he’s done, and can’t wait for his next day at school.
However, the next day the teachers cancel the running and jumping lessons, because the rabbit could already do both of them. They got him doing swimming and flying instead, two activities that he has zero aptitude for. The little rabbit goes home frustrated and wants to give up school altogether.
This parable, unfortunately, describes exactly what happens in our education system and in many organisations. It’s important to be aware of your weaknesses and to have a broad education, to learn how to write, to have a knowledge of maths and other basics. But it is absolutely crucial to know your strengths and to cultivate them.
It is important to spend time on our weaknesses to be able to survive in the world. But it is essential to invest in our strengths in order to prosper.
What strengths have you not invested enough time in to ensure that you prosper?
Un grand roi était pris de tristesse. Aucun médecin n’était capable de l’aider et son état s’aggrava jour après jour.
Un jour un homme se présenta au château, expliquant qu’il était paysan, observateur de la nature et qu’il était venu pour aider le roi. Les conseillers rigolèrent et lui expliquèrent que le roi ne se faisait pas soigner par des gens comme lui. L’homme s’assit alors et attendit patiemment.
L’état du roi empira encore et sa tristesse ne semblait plus en finir. Alors les conseillers laissèrent le paysan entrer. Sans un mot il s’approcha du roi et lui fit cadeau d’une bague en bois. Le roi regarda l’inscription, la glissa à son doigt et sourit pour la première fois depuis des mois.
« Votre majesté, que dit l’inscription de la bague ? » voulurent savoir les conseillers. « Juste 3 mots » – répliqua le roi : « Cela, aussi, passera ».
Quand vous êtes triste ou malheureux, rappelez-vous simplement que cela, aussi, passera.
Two monks are about to cross a river when a pretty young woman approaches.
She also needs to cross but is frightened of the fast-flowing water. The oldest monk offers to carry her on his back.
Once they reach the other side, she thanked him and left. The youngest monk scolds the other for what he has done: “You should be ashamed of yourself for having touched that woman’s body! ”
They continue on their way. When they reach the monastery, the young monk once again confronts the other and says, “I’m going to report you for your behaviour”.
Surprised, the other monk replies, “What are you talking about?”
“You carried a woman on your back, and you know that we are forbidden to do that!”
“Ah! That! You see, my young friend, I left that woman on the riverbank.
You, on the contrary, are still carrying her! ”
What are you still carrying on your back that you need to put down?
The members of our entrepreneurs’ club have all gathered together in a small theatre for an introductory course on improvisation, the entrepreneur’s secret weapon.
On stage, with the lights shining in our eyes, we are repeating a sentence that a voice from the darkness of the auditorium is telling us to say. Say it as if you were angry, say it with a Chinese accent, say it like a 2-year-old child, say it after you’ve had a drink or two!”
We’re all laughing at each other’s amazing improvisations, we laugh along with the audience and most of all we laugh at our own boldness. All this time, Christelle remains in the shadows. However, without her, none of this would be possible.
She tells us that she has learnt an incredible amount about the world of theatre during the course of her career. Although she never made it in the acting profession, she carved a place for herself “in the shadows”, playwriting, talent spotting, and sharing her passion with people like us.
The pride that she clearly feels in her offstage role is inspirational, and reminds us that we don’t have to do everything ourselves. Christelle Rizzuto’s job is to make others shine.
What about you? Who would you like to propel centre stage, while remaining in the shadows yourself?