Animal Totems and Messages From Our Guides

Akita mani yo!
Lakota for “observe everything as you go.”
Messages are around us all the time. We need only to pay attention to see them. Messages come to us as animals, insects, cloud formations, recurring numbers, colors, signs, syncs, songs and dreams. Open your eyes and pay attention. What message is the Universe trying to convey to you today?

I posted the above on my Facebook timeline recently along with the same photo. It is a motto I try to live by. I learned the Native American phrase in my 20s when I took a short course about Native American Spirituality. I loved the saying and never forgot it. I didn’t realize then that I would become someone looking up animal totems every time an animal out in nature crosses my path. Not only am I looking up my own messages for myself, I am posting the meanings to other people’s animal/insect photos. lol


Just today guitarist Nuno Bettencourt posted on his Instagram page photos of a praying mantis that joined him on stage with Rhianna. I can’t help myself. The meaning of the totem seemed to fit how hectic his life has been. He has just finished touring with Extreme and had been doing 6 big gigs with Rhianna and Eminem. The mantis was telling him it was time to slow down and go within.
Sum 41 front man’s mum posted a frog she saw. Again, the opportunity to give her Frog’s message couldn’t be passed up.
Today I heard a bird call I had never heard before. (click on the third one down titled “peough (red-shafted)” to hear the call I heard. ) It was loud so, of course, I had to go look to see who was calling to me. It was a male Red-shafted Northern Flicker. He was quite a pretty bird and one I had never seen before in the 8 years I have lived in Oregon. A Flicker is a type of woodpecker and I could have settled for the meaning of just a simple woodpecker, but he was special. I wanted to understand what his specific message was for me. Thankfully some people out there already did my work for me, but should you come across an animal you don’t know the meaning for, a way to seek out what they have to teach is to learn about their habits and what makes them unique. Flickers spend a lot of time on the ground unlike traditional woodpeckers. There are some interesting Native American tales about the Flicker and how he got his color. The two sites I linked above had some interesting information about Northern Flicker Totems.

The other day I found a perfect blue feather in my back yard. And, yes, my back yard has more clover than grass and the local bees like it that way. lol I knew the feather was likely from a scrub jay because that is the variety I have seen before that would fit the color. I have also seen a Stellar’s Jay, but the one I saw in the back yard had a lot more black than the one pictured here.

I collect these gifts and say a silent “thank you” and then discover what their message is. With the blue color, you can interpret it as having to do with the throat chakra which is all about communication. I sometimes look up the symbolism of the colors as well as the chakra meaning. One of my favorite people who talks about the meaning of colors is Elizabeth Harper. She does a Colorscope forecast every week and I have learned a lot from her weekly videos. One day I saw two red vehicles run red lights and then later in my Facebook feed, saw a theme of giraffes and took them to be a message for me.  The red light runners combined with the giraffes was a message about taking a risk and sticking my neck out. I am not a big risk taker and my guides were telling me it was time to take some risks.

Let’s talk about numbers. Numbers are everywhere and when you suddenly start noticing a number showing up for you over and over again, pay attention and find out what they are trying to tell you. I once had the number 333 turn up 3 times in a two hour period of time during a walk. There are tons of numerology sites out there, but my “go to” site seems to be the Sacred Scribes site.  While a lot of the “angel messages” sound the same, they do speak of the numbers’ individual meanings and that is really the important part because that is where you will be able to get a clearer idea of the number message.  When I see 5 repeatedly, automatically I think “change”.  The number 9 is about completion and the end of a cycle. The number 6 speaks to me of family. As you read the number messages, you start to get a feel for what each number represents.

There are so many ways to get messages from our guides and loved ones on the other side. When you start paying attention, you suddenly realize how much they communicate with us on a regular basis. There are no coincidences. Once you understand that, you can stop explaining things away as “just a coincidence”. Look around. What message is the Universe trying to convey to you?

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