Beaver away at your goals...

Image copyright Derek Otway

Last week, it was International Beaver Day (held on the 7th April).  I was thinking about beavers last night and when I woke up this morning.

They are pretty remarkable rodents, and I was lying in bed thinking about their determination and focus and way of getting things done.   They can look back at what they’ve achieved over a few months, and really see a difference.   Not only that, their endeavours have enabled other species – bats, birds, insects, fish, mammals – to benefit.  And so do humans, as the beavers have done all the work.   Beaver dams are known to reduce flooding (mind you, they can cause it as well, so beavers need managing). 

All the beaver has done is to create wetland – vital habitat – and as eco-engineers for wetlands, they have gone to their task with huge focus.   For small animals, they make a huge impact. 

This got me thinking about their approach to goal setting.   I can’t imagine the beavers sitting down with pen and paper or laptop and coming up with a goal (and a SMART one, at that) and then doing a SWOT analysis, a health and safety check and looking at their diversity policy.   Not for the beavers a tangled web of laws and regulations (unless you’re a human applying for a licence to have beavers) to frustrate their aim in life.  Beavers just get on with doing what beavers do best and love doing. 

For beavers of course have a passion, a real raison d’etre.  This is evidenced by the beautiful video of a rescued beaver, who was recuperating in a volunteer’s home.   The beaver was so passionate about building dams that he built one in the house, using a Christmas tree, a cuddly toy, and anything else he could find.  (The beaver is being raised by wildlife rehabilitators, because his parents were killed and their dam and lodge destroyed, so he was orphaned.)  Check out Woodside Wildlife Rescue to find out all about the work they do.

So as I was lying in bed, thinking about what beavers can achieve with their single-minded determination and focus, my thought was this:  If we could all harness a beaver’s approach to a goal we have in mind, with a clear aim, a single minded focus and a love for what we are doing and a belief in why we are doing it, how much difference would that make to the changes we want to make in life and achievements we want to have? 



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