Gifts: Gathering. Making preparations. Playfulness. Persistence. Memory. Trust (eating from a person’s hand).
Challenges: Hoarding. Fear of loss. Inability to relax.
Squirrel is the master of planning ahead. The misperception of Beaver being busy and always prepared really needs to be transferred to Squirrel, for whom this is an accurate description.
Squirrel is a helpful ally when you are working on complex projects or trying to achieve big goals. Squirrel’s strategy for goal achievement is to start early and work often. Squirrel has a big picture in mind (gathering as many nuts as possible), and it executes its vision by tackling each detail (finding and burying individual nuts). The lesson for you is to see what you want then go after each little piece of it.
Squirrel is a do-it-yourself-er. It does not delegate. It does not wait to be told to get started. With Squirrel as your spirit animal, you may naturally be a self-starter. But if getting started is a challenge for you, you may be focused too much on Squirrel’s gift of playfulness. The gift of play is extremely important to Squirrel—and to you. All work and no play makes Squirrel ineffective. What Squirrel teaches is that you need harmony between work and play. It’s not all and none. It’s more this now, more that later.
Unlike Snake, who consumes only what it needs in that moment—and then may not have to eat again for weeks—Squirrel teaches the benefits of hoarding. Note though that Squirrel’s hoarding is not fear-based. Squirrel’s hoarding is pragmatic as it enables Squirrel to survive the winter. Squirrel hoards temporarily, and it consumes what it hoards. The message for you is to do now what will benefit you tomorrow—or next week or next year. Squirrel is motivated by its future focus. Procrastination is not an issue for Squirrel and is probably not an issue for you.
If Squirrel is not your spirit animal and procrastination is a problem for you, you can call in Squirrel to help you get started and stay motivated. It can be tough to work with a spirit animal that is not naturally yours. But calling in one like Squirrel to guide you through a specific issue can still be effective, especially if you are sincere about wanting its guidance.
A challenge with Squirrel is relaxing. You may be so action-oriented that taking a break feels stressful. That’s where Squirrel’s gift of play comes in. You need to relax, but you don’t have to relax like everyone else. If your idea of relaxing is doing something active, such as running or renovating a house or gardening, then do what works for you. Do what’s fun for you. The point is to allow your mind to rest. This doesn’t have to mean turning off your thoughts and meditating for an hour. It can mean focusing your brain on something different, ideally getting into a rhythm that allows your thoughts to run free—like a squirrel in a tree.