Dianne sent me a picture of a red bird during our October showUP happy hour and I lost it. Which only reinforces the story of my red bird blindness. JeNae reminded us all of how our brains take shortcuts to process information. The shortcuts are built over time and experiences and are well-intentioned to help you focus on what is most important.
An innocuous example is my red bird problem. I love to take long walks and occasionally I can convince my daughter to join me. On a walk this summer we discovered my "red bird blindness". I was focused on plants and the new fence that was being replaced along our walk. My curiosity for the opportunity to see into a little slice of backyards takes all my focus and I point out every plant with blue and purple flowers so we can add them to our yard. I see the squirrels because the dog chases all the squirrels, but my daughter keeps pointing out birds. Every time she has to show me several times before I spot the bird. By the end of the walk, she is congratulating me for spotting one on my own. My brain has prioritized looking for new yard ideas and satisfying my nosy neighbor tendency and I miss the birds. Even in my search for red birds for this post, I got a bit distracted as you can see.
What is your red bird? Have you stopped noticing that you are the only woman in the room during high-level meetings? Has your brain just accepted the fact that one person steps on everyone else during the meeting (BTW that might have been me last night in the showUP call)?
The challenge this week, notice what you've become blind to. Start looking for the red birds in the room and call out what you see. ShowUP for the red birds that we don't see every day and make sure they get the respect they deserve.