Lessons From Nature


I am fortunate enough to live in a place that has natural beauty all around. My house is right next to a major waterway. In fact, I can see the swift moving current over the top of my computer monitor as I write this post. Just behind my house, there are beautiful rolling hills with hiking trails that extend for miles.


Every day, my eager pup and I take to the hills for our morning hike, before it gets too hot. We walk along the dusty, caked, and dry-cracked dirt fire road that winds along the deep waterway just below the steep hills.  I enjoy my daily ritual of quiet introspection and Finn can pursue his bliss uninterrupted, sniffing at, and peeing on, every bit of dry bush he sees.


The sun is already fierce by mid-morning but a breeze is usually blowing. The cooling winds always seem to bring the birds of prey with them. Finn and I are usually alone up in the hills except for the red-tailed hawks, golden eagles, and turkey vultures.


Today, while hiking, I was repeatedly subjected to a bird of prey drive-by. A massive turkey vulture kept circling back and buzzing right by me, as if to say, "Hey! Check me out!"


As I was walking along, he had my full attention. I watched him rise, dip, turn and circle back over the same ground several times. Then I realized that not once did he flap his wings to stay in motion. He was just riding the thermals.


Now, turkey vultures are known for their static soaring flight. It's difficult for them to get off the ground and initiate flight because of their large, ungainly bodies and massive wings. Once they're up, they stay up, minimizing their efforts by taking advantage of the rising columns of air so they are able to soar gracefully over potential prey.


So I watched the dance. His economy of movement merged with the generous sweep of rising air and allowed him to just flow.


Though I often praise the virtues of being in the flow, the past few days I had been doing anything but. Working on a new project was leaving me feeling a little depleted because I just couldn't "let go" of the work I was creating. Fussing over minute details, and trying, for days, to force an outcome with my borderline obsessive behavior was getting me nowhere except irritable and emotionally exhausted.


I realized I was just flapping my wings, working way too hard when I could have just taken a few deep breaths, surrendered to the process, and merged with the flow.


I had completed my task to the best of my ability. It was time to turn it over to a greater power to let the work take root and blossom in Divine timing.


This amazing bird, so in the moment, and in tune with his natural surroundings, instinctively knew to work only as much as absolutely necessary and effortlessly partnered with the force of nature, surrendering to it. I realized that he possessed more wisdom than me in that moment. I humbly accepted the lesson and thanked him.


Thank you, turkey vulture. See you tomorrow.


Love and Light-




"In every walk with nature, one receives far more than he seeks." 

- John Muir



Kathryn Mussell is an Abundance Creation Coach, empathic energy healer, and writer.




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