Heron or Pigeon?
I once had a professor who asked the class to introduce ourselves through a metaphor. You know the kind – if I was an animal what kind would I be? In years since I’ve tormented my own Psychology classes with this same introductory activity. Students squirm, some roll their eyes…but in the end they always rise to the occasion and without fail we get a more interesting, richer (sometimes humorous…and always more real) picture of each other than we’d get with, “Hello. My name is…”
I remember in those first years sitting by a lake thinking of my own metaphor. I was living in Florida at the time, it was a beautiful day and the park was filled with birds. My attention was drawn to the beautiful Great Blue Heron standing just inside the water. Graceful. Elegant. Mesmerizingly still. Mindfulness…personified (or, birdified?).
Ah…right then I knew – I wanted to be a Heron. Yes, to be so calm, to use energy discerningly, and embody such an aura of stillness. Just watching the great bird, I was both more alert and more relaxed.
Then…I turned my head and there beside me was a flock of…pigeons. Pecking the ground, moving in circles, looking a bit confused, not an ounce of stillness in them. The polar opposite of my Heron. I couldn’t help but laugh, and with a sigh, admit… I am part pigeon.
Since that day I have consciously worked with this duality – the striving for heronhood and the nature of pigeonhood, both part of my essence.
For over twenty years I have blended my backgrounds in education, counseling, positive psychology and coaching, and my passions for mindfulness, creativity, wellness and neuroscience into work that deeply matters to me – helping people develop self-awareness, agency, empathy, a deep sense of meaning and a respect for what is REAL within them.
Responsive, Engaged, Authentic Living…
My motto as a coach and teacher is taken from Richard Bach (author of Jonathan Livingston Seagull)…“We teach best what we most need to learn.” Managing stress. Practicing Mindfulness. Becoming REAL. Being resilient and optimistic. These aren’t things I came to this life naturally good at doing or being. Mine has been a journey of learning and growing…and it’s a journey that continues. Every day, every moment, is a lesson in living. And it’s that journey I seek to share.
And for the obligatory bio…
Tracy Carreon teaches Developmental Psychology at Front Range Community College, is a Certified Mindful Coach and award-winning author, with over 25 years experience as an educator, coach, group facilitator and speaker. Tracy’s greatest passion is to blend the latest in neuroscience, positive psychology, mindfulness and wellness principles to help others unlock the brain’s innate ability for true transformation, so changes may be felt from the inside and experienced in life’s unfolding.