My LinkedIn post, 23 Nov 2021
Are you a turtle or a dolphin today? It was the notices at our local pool directing children to their “Turtles” and “Dolphins” swim lessons that prompted me to ask myself this question.
Dolphins and turtles are two of my favourite sea creatures. I see turtles as wise, steady, focused, often swimming alone, while dolphins are curious, fast, agile and gregarious.
On my regular swims, I visualise them below or alongside, and I ask: Do I want to be more turtle or dolphin today? Should I speed up or slow down? Do I need more quiet focus, or more collaborative chatter? Do I stay on course, or take a speculative leap?
Both these species are at risk from human greed and exploitation. So visualising them also makes me reflect on how we can become more ‘them’ – not taking what we don’t need, not destroying habitats, but living in balance with our environment.
I often use visualisation in coaching. It helps clients to switch off their internal chatter and opens their creative minds to the possibilities they yearn for, what’s holding them back, and what steps they can take to realise their aspirations.
“Imagination is one of our most powerful tools,” writes Robin Wall Kimmerer in Braiding Sweetgrass, her book about what nature can teach us. “What we imagine, we can become.”
What is your favourite creature, and what do you love about it? What aspects would you like to see more of in yourself?