Canadian Geese can teach us a thing or two about how to get along in life. As each bird flaps its wings in a V-formation, it creats an uplift for the bird immediately following. By flying in a V-formation, the flock has at least a 71 per cent greater flying range compared to each bird flying on its own.

The lesson from this is that people who share a common direction and sense of community can get where they are going more quickly and easily because they are travelling on the thurst of one another.

When a goose falls out of formation, it suddenly feels the drag and resistance of trying to go it alone, and quickly gets back into formation to take advantage of the lifting power of the bird in front.

If we have as much sense as a goose, we will stay in formation with those who are headed the same way we are.

When the head goose gets tired, it rotates back into the wing and another goose flies point.

Lesson: It is sensible to take turns doing demanding jobs—with people or with geese flying South.

Geese honk from behind to encourage those up front to keep their speed.

Lesson: What do we say when we honk from behind?

Finally, and this is important, when a goose gets sick or is wounded by gunshots and falls out of formation, two other geese will follow it down to lend help and protection. They stay with the fallen goose until it is able to fly or dies. Only then do they launch out on their own or join another formation to catch up with their gaggle. Lesson: If we have the sense of a goose, we will stand by each other as they do.

This article originally appeared in The Umbrella Newsletter.