The Rabbit, Fish, and Eagle: Focus on Your Strengths

by Don Smith

All products and services featured on this site are independently selected by our authors and editors. If you buy something through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Rabbit, Fish, and Eagle Go to School

It was the first day of school. “What a wonderful time this will be,” thought Rabbit, Fish, and Eagle! Excited to learn new things, they all looked forward to meeting their new classmates and getting started.

Swimming Class

The first class of the day was swimming. Fish flashed around the pool; after all, he'd been swimming since he was a baby and loved it! Compared to Fish, Eagle and Rabbit barely moved through the water. The teacher walked up and said, “Amazing job, Fish! You've got an A+ in swimming!

The Fish Quickly Masters Swimming.
Photo by Rachel Hisko on Unsplash

“Rabbit, you got a C. That's not bad, but you‘ve got to work on this.” Shaking her head, she moved on to Eagle. “While you managed to stay afloat, I can only give you a D, below average. I'm sure you can become a great swimmer with enough practice, though.”

Fish was proud; he was the star of the show! Rabbit and Eagle, on the other hand, were a bit depressed. This wasn't a great start.

Running Class

The next class was running. Rabbit took off like a dart; he loved to run! Eagle hopped way behind him. Fish just flopped around gasping for air and didn't make it very far. Smiling, the teacher exclaimed, “Excellent job, Rabbit! That's an A!”

The Rabbit Quickly Mastered Running
Image by Julia Schwab from Pixabay

Looking down her nose at the other two, she said sternly, “Eagle, you've got a lot of work to do. I'm going to give you a D. Fish, I don't even feel like you were trying with all that flopping around! I expected more out of my star pupil; I'm disappointed, please practice!”

Flying Class

The final class was flying. By now, Eagle and Fish were getting pretty discouraged.

Running around, Eagle lept into the air and felt almost like he was getting it but couldn't quite take flight. Rabbit was even worse; he even tried leaping off a nearby rock but hurt his leg as he crashed into the ground. Fish was beside himself; he felt like he couldn't even breathe out of the water and got nowhere. He was trying hard but could tell the teacher was disappointed again.

“That's it for today, though. Go home and practice.” said the teacher.

Unable to fly, run, or swim, Baby Eagle left school feeling very discouraged.

Unable to fly, run, or swim, Baby Eagle left school very discouraged.
Photo from PxHere

Focusing on Failure

Over the coming months, all three animals worked hardest on those things they had failed on. Rabbit and Eagle got a little better at swimming, and Eagle also got a little better at running. Fish, who started as the star student his first day, sadly seemed to be failing at everything other than swimming.

Eagle finally managed to make it into the air after many falls and even got compliments from the teacher. Even then he knew he wasn't very good, as he was constantly crashing into things and couldn't get very high off the ground like a few of the older kids could. And he still couldn't seem to get the hang of swimming or running.

Determined to improve, they all focused on their weakest classes, Fish & Rabbit spent their time trying to fly, and Eagle spent all his time trying to swim a little faster. Eventually, all three became depressed that they weren't getting anywhere compared to their peers. No longer exciting, they started to hate going to school.

The Motivational Speaker

One day, a motivational speaker came to the school and encouraged everyone to focus on their strengths and do what they love.

Fish and rabbit immediately knew what to do. Fish stopped worrying about running or flying and started focusing on swimming. Soon, he was doing all sorts of amazing tricks in the water! Rabbit focused on running and quickly outpaced all but the fleetest creatures at the school.

Eagle wasn't quite sure what his strengths were. He wasn't very good at anything, and other than eating he wasn't too excited about doing anything. Discouraged, he asked his teacher, “I can't seem to do anything right, what do you think I'm good at?” Surprised, the teacher exclaimed, “Why Eagle, haven't you noticed that you're one of the few in your class who can fly? You have an amazing gift!!!”

Strengths Can Look Like Weaknesses at First

The teacher went on, “We have to teach people lots of things because no one is born being great at much of anything. The only way you know what you're going to be great at is to try many things, practice, and see what you truly enjoy. Some people like Rabbit and Fish know right away what they're good at and love to do. People like you take a little longer to discover their gifts, but I can tell you're going to be an amazing flyer even if you can't see it yet.”

Encouraged by the kind words, yet still wondering if he'd ever get the hang of it, Eagle started practicing flying every chance he got. The crashes became fewer and fewer, and soon, he had that mastered; it was like he was born to fly! He grew to love the feel of the wind whistling past his face as he soared high above everyone else.

Proud of their mastery and finally fully embracing who they were and letting go of being someone else, they all lived happily ever after.

Photo by Mathew Schwartz on Unsplash
The Rabbit, Fish, and Eagle: Focus on Your Strengths


About the Author 

Don Smith

The Personal Growth Channel founder, Don Smith also owns a technology company, has served on the board of directors for multiple companies, and enjoys seeing people achieve their goals. Happily married with five children, he lives in Springfield, Illinois.

Articles You May Like

This weekend I was playing soccer with my youngest son and daughter in the park. At first, I was running away with the ball because

Read More
Pass the Ball to Succeed on and off the Court

It seems like everyone has their rules for success these days. There's Bill Marriot's 12 rules for success, Steve Job's 12 rules of success, Arnold

Read More
10 Rules for Success: Lessons to Live By

How would your life and business change if you could trust everyone around you completely and they fully trusted you? Businesses that move quickly are

Read More
Book of The Month – The Speed of TRUST: The One Thing That Changes Everything

I recently attended a conference and got to see Adrienne Ross, the author of “Push Your Way to Purpose — How to Get from Where

Read More
Book of the Month: Push Your Way to Purpose: How to Get from Where You Are to Where You’re Meant to Be

I recently decided to take the ClickFunnels One Funnel Away Challenge after seeing tons of glowing reviews. The premise of the challenge is that they

Read More
ClickFunnels One Funnel Away Challenge Review – Why You Probably Won’t Become a Millionaire in 30 Days (But May Still Want to Take It)

A bull or bronc rider, a rancher working on the range, a fighter pilot, all these dreams and more I had as a child.  Heading

Read More
When death draws near, what will I regret?

I once worked with a CEO that, regardless of what he did, was unable to elicit compliance from his team. Logically, he said all the

Read More
The Importance of Making Communication Personal

I've started many groups over the years. An online Toastmasters club where people become better speakers, business owners' groups, church groups, pick up soccer groups,

Read More
Why Starting Something New is Often Painful

So you want to start a business, and you want to know what you can do.  Start by asking these three questions.  Just brainstorm all

Read More
I want to start a business but don’t have ideas, what now?