Jared and I have recently begun referring to my daughter Emma as a honey badger. We mean it mostly as a compliment, although one only understood by YouTube or Wild Kratts fans. Fortunately, Emma is well-versed in the abilities of the honey badger thanks to PBS kids, so she gets it.
For those of you who don’t, this is the (not entirely safe for work) honey badger:
To summarize, the honey badger has been regarded as the most fearless animal in all of the animal kingdom. It really doesn’t give a shit.
We could all learn a lot from the honey badger.
3 Things To Learn from the Honey Badger
1. Keep going.
The honey badger gets stung by like a million bees, but it just keeps going. The honey badger is hungry, after all.
How many times have we quit after one or two stings? We run at the first sign of pain, fear, or discomfort. Sometimes we don’t even try because we’re pretty sure it would hurt. Do you ever wonder what would have happened if you kept going?
2. Get back up.
The honey badger gets stung not just by bees, but by a cobra. And this time, he passes out. A little while later, the honey badger wakes up and gets right back up and continues to eat the cobra.
Pushing forward doesn’t mean you won’t get knocked on your butt sometimes, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay down. In fact, the best reward is often reserved for those who have been knocked down and gotten back up. Do you know what the honey badger ate for the next week? Cobra.
3. Don’t worry about giving other people a treat.
Sure, the honey badger does all the work and the birds and the jackals hang around and wait to take their pieces. “Thanks for the treat, stupid!”
So what? Why do we worry that someone else might accidentally benefit from our work? The only way to live fearlessly is to be happy when your work contributes to the success of others. Worrying about someone getting undue credit is a sign that you are afraid there isn’t enough to go around. Believe that there is enough and you won’t have to waste any energy protecting your share.
How does the honey badger keep going? How does it find the strength to get back up? How does it have the energy to feed himself and those who stand by waiting for leftovers?
The honey badger is hungry.
And the honey badger doesn’t give a shit.
Be hungry. Be fearless. And stop worrying about anything that gets in your way.
(And it might not be a horrible idea to learn how to run in slow motion.)