You have probably heard or read more than once that stress is bad. You know you should not take things too seriously and that you should take time to relax, but I would like to share something unique with you. Something nobody else has ever told you —
But first of all, I have to give the advice for which I am famous. Breathe. It costs nothing, and you have to do it anyway, so when you start feeling uptight or overwhelmed, take a few deep breaths. You might even go on a two-minute mental vacation. Imagine a relaxing scene or visualize the annoying relative with potatoes for eyes.
Now on to the fun part. The advice you will get nowhere else.
If you want to keep stress under control, just use Fowl Language. That is f-o-W-l – not f-o-u-l. Let me explain:
I have a flock of chickens. They make all kinds of sounds, and when I listen to them, there’s no doubt as to the meaning they want to convey. They communicate effectively. Better than most humans.
There are twelve nest boxes with straw for the ladies’ warmth and comfort. When a hen is laying an egg, she lets everyone know – and I do mean EVERYONE. Even through closed windows I can hear when one of the precious brown jewels is about to land in the straw.
I make a point of calling out praise and gratitude to the hens when I hear them calling out their accomplishment. I also thank the ladies for the eggs and the roosters for their songs when I feed the flock in the evening. Perhaps they don’t understand English, but I’m sure they understand the intent.
When I hear a hen announcing the gift she is presenting, I cannot help but express my gratitude. I enjoy conveying my appreciation to humans as well. When someone puts hard work into preparing a beautiful meal or selecting a gift, it is fun to lift that person and praise the accomplishment. Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? It’s too easy to fall into a trap of being critical. Giving praise is good for the soul. It costs nothing and spreads good feelings.
A number of the hens have decided that they like to lay their eggs not in the dozen nest boxes, but in a pile of straw in the corner. I often find half the day’s offerings there.
The birds offer an endless source of humor. I went into the coop to gather eggs the other day, and several hens were actually lined up, waiting to use the favored corner straw pile. I laughed out loud. Quilt, a patchwork brown hen, was in the straw, and Snow, Coal, Jet and Buttercream were lined up behind her.
Snow must have come too close, because Quilt used another form of Fowl Language. It was easy to translate her, “Bok-bok,bok-BOK!” into English. One hand on her hip and the other pointing an accusing finger, Quilt said, “Get your feathery self back. I am NOT finished here and you are getting in my face!” Snow had the good sense to take a step back and Quilt’s protests ceased.
Here is how you can apply this aspect of Fowl Language at parties and gatherings… Let’s say you are eating dinner with your family and one of the relatives is dancing on your last nerve. Now visions of drowning her in the gravy dance in your head. But before you give in to homicide, consider this. Murder really dampens a meal and gets you in loads of trouble. Just take a hint from Quilt and put the pesky relation in her place.
Here’s how to do it without getting into a shouting match. Cock your head, put one hand on your hip, point a finger at the offending party, and give your best, “Bok-bok-bok BOK. Bok. Bok,” and finish it off with one last, emphatic, explosive, “BOK!” That’ll show her. It will probably also get the entire family to laugh. Then everyone’s stress will dissolve into fits of giggles. Try it and let me know how it goes.
Ronda Del Boccio is a globally published, award-winning author. She also happens to be legally blind. People always tell her she’s “amazing” and “inspiring,” she is simply living her life to the fullest. Ronda is co-author of “I’ll Push, You Steer: The Definitive Guide to Stumbling Through Life With Blinders On”