• Vicki O'Connor

Shiny Object Syndrome and Talking to a Bull

Updated: Sep 26, 2020

There's been a lot of talk in the circles I move in (LOL - is if I'm "moving" around with Covid restrictions!) about shiny object syndrome.

Some think it is a good thing, some a not-so-good thing.

I'm a bit on the fence but if you asked me to make a definite decision I would say that shiny object syndrome is a good thing (in moderation).

You see, up until recently I would have said that shiny object syndrome was not a particularly good habit to be partaking in. I mean who hasn't walked into a room and seen something other than what they went in there for, become fascinated with said "other" object and spent longer-than-you-meant-to playing with or engaged in some kind of activity with said "other" object.

Or, who hasn't sat down to do their tax or other important paperwork, opened up their computer and got distracted by your FaceBook feed, your Inbox of emails and resurface hours later having done nothing about the task you originally sat down to do.

Be honest, you have haven't you?

We all do it all the time and we will continue doing it until it becomes a real problem and absolutely nothing gets done and there are consequences.

If there are no real consequences to shiny object syndrome then I don't agree that it is a problem.

In fact, in the kind of world we currently find ourselves in I think it can actually be good for us as a distraction from all the sh*t going on.

For instance, take a friend of mine. We were talking on the phone the other day; just chewing the fat about our businesses and our vision for our collaboration together and what we feel it can bring to our area (hint it is VERY exciting). Both of us see a bright future for the empowerment of women and women's collaborations in our small rural area of Victoria. Needless to say we were very animated and excited.

But that is not the point.

The point is is that my friend (who lives on a magnificent rural property with all the usual livestock suspects) was telling me that she went outside to put some rubbish in the wheelie bin before she sat down to do some work photographing products for her new online business; work that is time sensitive as she wants to get the ball rolling and launch her products. Now putting the rubbish out is not out of the ordinary; we all do it and it is quite boring. It's the "shiny object" that caught her eye when she was outside that is the point.

Whilst walking along the paddock fence, an enourmous grey (I know, not exactly a "shiny" colour but you get the drift) bull came right up to the fence and they started "talking" to each other.

You know - the standard Dr DooLittle convo: How are you? How's your day? Are you happy here? Is the food up to scratch? etc, conversation ensued.

The experience of having a massive, untamed animal just wander right up to you and stand within an arms length left a profound impression on my friend. Whether you believe they actually had a conversation together is absolutely irrelevant. The encounter left her feeling uplifted and over-joyed in what has been of late, a pretty dreary and (pandemically) challenging year.

Sure she had many, many things to do back inside at her desk but this shiny object was more than worthy of her attention.

So, my question is:

Can shiny object syndrome actually be the universe guiding you to a healing or uplifting experience that you need in that very moment?

Is it possible that you really needed to pick up that (shiny) object that was on you dressing table and sit with it for a while to reconnect with the memories it evokes?

Could it be that what you really needed was a little distraction from all the tasks and responsibilities that mount up in our lives and the shiny object was the catalyst for the energetic boost you got?

Could these shiny objects be the very tonic and energetic boost you need to get through your day just that little bit higher on life because of the space the shiny object gave you?

Of course if you end up achieving nothing in you entire day because you see everything as a shiny object then there may be an issue that needs addressing.

But if not, maybe the next shiny object that grabs your attention is an opportunity to stop constantly "doing" and give you more time for some "being".

(pic of said bull below)

much love,


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