World Compliment Day: The Kingfisher


It is World Compliment Day today and I want to compliment the Kingfisher. I live near the Thames and when I see them fishing along the riverbank, I marvel at their glistening eye-catching colours on the drabbest of days. Also I marvel at what they have to teach us about mental health. (I marvel at all animals teaching in this area, to be honest!)

These tiny birds which nest in burrows on the banks of rivers or streams are between 10 to 20cm long. With their stunning plumage, they have no problem in being seen, they have no hesitation, no uncertainly nor any doubt in their abilities. The are the King-Fisher, literally.

They dive in with such focus to seize opportunities of what lay beneath the surface. And if the is no bounty to be fished out, they try again, using a variety of skilled approaches. They know how to achieve abundance.  

They inspire me to ask myself questions.

Which projects or opportunities do I need to develop more confidence in myself for?

What might I need to let go of so I can just dive right in?

Where might I need to be more creative and try different techniques or different approaches for things that aren’t going as well as I desire?

Do I give myself the compliments I deserve for my abilities?

Also, there is another aspect that this bird brings to the world. Spiritual and cultural beliefs.

Kingfishers hold significance in various societies around the world. In some cultures, they are considered symbols of good luck or prosperity, while in others, they are associated with peace and tranquillity.

I understand why, when I watch them between dives, they have this incredible gift of absolute stillness.

I curiously check in with my beliefs around abundance and I reflect on my meditation practices.  For me they go hand in hand, an animal with a busy mind is never going to eat well.

With my background in construction and shipbuilding, there is also another compliment to be paid to the Kingfisher.

This tiny and mighty bird didn’t just inspire me, they inspired the design of the Shinkansen, also known as the Japanese Bullet Train.

The front of the train, which is known as the “nose cone” was designed based on the kingfisher’s beak, because of its aerodynamic properties. The bird is known for its ability to dive into water without creating much splash or disturbance, thanks to its streamlined beak shape. So, engineers and designers observed this and applied it to the bullet train’s design to reduce air resistance and noise as the train travels at high speeds.

The Kingfisher is such a great teacher on so many levels. May their burrows be located on the riverbanks where I swim, for as long as I can swim!

I’ll leave you with this invitation, if you are looking for some stillness, some messages of confidence or some quiet space for creative nourishment, I regularly do complimentary guided meditations which you are so warmly invited to join.

Take care,


Tara x

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