Keeping Things Simple

When we have behavioral problems with our birds, it can be very hard to think clearly and sometimes our own behavior is irrational. We love our parrots as our children. We watch with pride as they learn and explore their world and brag about their accomplishments. We grow as humans in watching them grow as parrots. But we are also affected when they hurt and suffer right alongside them. Sometimes it is difficult to free ourselves emotionally at those times when we really need to be at our best.

This post is just a reminder to keep things simple.

I know that some of the worst decisions I have made in my life have been a result of over-thinking and over-exaggerating my problems.This is also true when it comes to parrots. The best solutions come most quickly when I stand back from the problem and observe it with simplicity.

For example, when I rehomed Linus, my umbrella cockatoo, he was a ball of pent of anger and frustration. While trying to resolve his issues (screaming and biting), it dawned on me that I was making things too complicated because I was looking for the answers to too many questions. The only question that needed answering was WHY might he be feeling so horrible about his new life. I made a list of the likely causes. In the end, trust issues were the common denominator. From that point, it was very easy to devise a course of action.

Have you ever noticed how easy it is to solve OTHER people’s problems?  A friend comes to you in tears and you seem to have the answers right there at your fingertips, but that same problem in your own house might send you running to a psychiatrist. Emotions can cloud our judgement and cause us to overlook the obvious.

With your birds, try to train yourself to stand back and look at problems with detachment and objectivity. Keep matters uncomplicated by pushing aside your own fears, anger and disappointment. Walk away for a while, if you must, and return with fresh eyes and an uncluttered mind. The best solution is always the simplest one.

Patty Jourgensen specializes in avian health, behavior and nutrition and has been working with and caring for rescue birds since 1987.

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