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The Bumblebee Tells You How to Fly High When The World Says The Opposite

Posted: April 7, 2021

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How often have you been told that you are not enough? The bumblebee’s story tells you why you are!

We can do it. We may not always know it.

But we are enough.

Aerodynamically, the bumblebee shouldn’t be able to fly. But the bumblebee doesn’t know it, so it goes on flying anyway. This belief was based on a lot of assumptions and some science and maths. Of course, how can science and maths be wrong? 2+2 has to be 4!

However, the bee has proved it otherwise. The important thing to remember is that maths is full of variables. Change one variable and the outcome is different. Just like the bee, we all fly at different times as we don’t know we cannot, and don’t base our decisions on science and maths. We are full of variables.

How it started, how it’s going

I completely relate to this. If I go back to (?) my journey, I have been written off many times, again and again. Told I cannot do it. You are not good enoughstarted when I was born, as some superstitious relative decided that my star did not align with my dad’s and that it would be a problem to get me married – believe me, this was told when I was born! – not even when I was of age. Somehow, these words, these thoughts never penetrated my skull. They never bothered me.

Growing up was no cakewalk either. My sister was academically so beyond my reach. She stood first in every exam and every test. You can imagine being compared to her all the time. She was the ‘good kid’ and I was the rowdy one. That set me up in a different direction as a kid, and I am glad it did.

Initially, I did everything I could to please everybody. Trying and trying hard. In one way or another, I was told that I could not fly. I was told that I did not have it in me to achieve. My outspokenness was perceived as arrogance and there was every effort made to shut me up.

Somewhere that changed – when I realised that I needed to be happy doing things that were important to me, and pleasing others was not one of them. I was enough and (understanding that) I didn’t need anyone to tell me what I was capable of set me up for success.

Change variable, change outcome

I realised that I was the biggest variable. Anytime I applied the variables, the outcome changed. I didn’t need others to tell me whether or not I could fly. Life happened and I made many mistakes that I learnt from. The best part was that I learnt from my mistakes that strengthened the way I looked at myself.

The minute I heard I couldn’t do something I would want to prove them wrong. If I couldn’t do the task for some reason, it was okay. I just had to apply the wings differently. I had to change the variables. I had to change the math.

The variables were the confidence quotient, the grit, and the belief in myself. The rest didn’t matter. It was also not important to succeed at everything I took up. It was not important to take myself as seriously as I would to the point of being annoying. That set me free and I took up things that I didn’t think I was capable of.

I have observed that for every person that encourages you to do better in your life, there are three who say you can’t. I took that in my stride and built a growth mindset. I figured that if you have a growth mindset you will know that even if you are not great at something, you can become great!

Game changers

Hard work, inputs from others, listening and willing to work on myself at every stage of my life – all these were game changers for me! Failure was not the end of the world but an opportunity to grow. It was something that kept me grounded. Not that it was easy.

I also observed people who were successful at work and in their personal lives. The common traits that I observed were:

  1. Curiosity – they were curious about almost everything. Even if they didn’t understand that subject, they wanted to know more and learn
  2. They considered failure a learning opportunity
  3. They were optimistic
  4. They had loads of self-belief…
  5. Always used positive language and were inclusive
  6. They believed they had the power
  7. Used good networking skills
  8. Had a mentor / coach
  9. Listened more and spoke less
  10. Stood up for the right things

After the Bee movie came out, this theory that the bumblebee shouldn’t fly was quashed, saying that the aerodynamics of the bee was pretty okay and they were meant to fly. The truth is that bees simply create mini-hurricanes wherever they go, which is a lot easier to get your head around.

I was fine with this change too as all of us as women, as beings that carry responsibilities through and through, create mini-hurricanes wherever we go and keep on flying and take others with us as well.

Image credits: Photo by Joshua Abner from Pexels

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