Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Going to the birds: why Magpie?

Now, Magpie might not seem the most obvious name for a coaching business.

 I don't know if you have ever tried to think up a name for a business - especially a coaching business - but its a bit of a nightmare. To begin with,  you soon discover that someone else has already used all your good ideas. Then, after a few days of trawling options, such as."inspire coaching" or "full potential coaching" or "make your mark coaching" "get-everything-you-could-ever-possibly-want-and-be-happy-and-successful-while-you-do-it coaching", I reach a cynical  "inspiration overdose". (I'm much the same with exposure to motivational posters,, after I while you see me heading towards sites like despair inc in search of an anti-saccharin sense of humor reset.... )

So then, there I was, staring out of the window watching a magpie hop around on the lawn......

I am a useless bird spotter,  despite having lived almost all my life in the country. I like to blame my poor eyesight and the fact the damn things never stay still ( I am a good tree spotter....) but it means my range of birds is generally limited to pigeon, big pigeon, several pigeons and a black bird, robins and, easiest of all, the magpie.....

 The magpie, you see, is there in black and white. You never need to argue about whether you've seen a magpie or not Although if you are lucky enough to find a feather, like the one lying here on my desk, then you'll find there are a myriad of shimmering greens and blues masquerading under that black, so maybe nothing is ever that black and white......

Magpies have a reputation for collecting shiny objects (along with telling the future).  Sometimes we are lucky enough to be clear about what our goals are and where we want to go. But it seems that a lot of the time we are hunting for the glimmers in the darkness that indicate where we should be going - we just have to recognize the pull of our own bright shiny objects.

And the magpie has one other special quality; turns out its one of the few creatures, and the only known bird that has been shown to have a sense of self and the ability to recognize its self in a mirror. And knowing yourself is a good starting point for any journey of learning or development.

So maybe its not that strange a name for a coaching business after all!

You can find out more about magpies and coaching at

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