Live Like a Mermaid – Lessons from the Sea

Have you noticed that mermaids have become rather trendy these days? I’m mostly excited by that as it makes mermaid-themed clothing, bumper stickers and household decor more easily available. But it’s not just a trend for me. I’m a mermaid from way back.

Why? I grew up near a lake and have been a strong swimmer since I was a little kid. Swimming is one of my favorite things to do. I made sure both of my children learned to swim and to love the water at a young age. For years my daughter and I have described ourselves as “QM” or quarter-mermaid.

Mermaids aren’t just stylish mythical fish-ladies. The archetype of water-dwelling humanoids makes a lot of sense given our species’ origins.

Water is sacred. The sea is our mother. Her children, the mermaids, have plenty to teach us.

Here are some of my favorite lessons from the mermaids:

Dive deep. Mermaids aren’t made for life in the shallows – and neither are you. Small talk and pop culture can be useful and fun, but they aren’t the whole picture. You know that. You’re here to find out more. So, do it – and in a fun, uplifting way!

Creativity and spirituality are entwined. Play in the depths, doing loop-de-loops like a deep-diving mermaid! It’s fun and you’ll learn to thrive in your world more easily. Open your heart to a deep connection with the cosmos.

Call what you want to you. I know, that’s sirens, not mermaids, but go with it. The ancient sirens were said to sing so beautifully that it compelled sailors to divert their ship’s course. They weren’t out there swimming around the sea, hunting down their dream guys. Sirens – the cousins of mermaids – anchored themselves in what they desired and called it to them. I’m not saying you should enchant others and manipulate them into doing your bidding. Rather, immerse yourself in your dreams and create your ideal experiences by living them from the inside out. Instead of engaging in an endless pursuit of happiness, dwell where you are and call it to you.

Explore other worlds but stay true to you. Many of the stories about mermaids tell of their desire to be able to walk on land, be like a human woman and to love someone who isn’t of the sea. But ultimately, after exploring these other options, they find a solution that allows them to be true to who they really are. Mermaids travel widely, gathering wisdom. Ultimately, each mermaid tells her own story. Be your authentic self, follow your intuition – it’s the mermaid way.

Be in the moment. Mermaids aren’t distracted by social media, the news or what others might think of them. They are wild and free, living in the moment, surfing the waves and enjoying both sun and storm. You, too, can let go of external pressures and dwell in your center, following your callings. The best way for you to create a better future is to live fully in the now, with kindness.

Go with the flow. Perhaps the most important lesson of all is to go with the flow of life. When we try to resist and control what’s happening, we just make ourselves miserable. If you’re trying to swim somewhere but you’re fighting the current all the way, you might get there but you’ll be exhausted. When you point yourself in the direction your inner compass is showing you and choose your moment based on that, you’re swimming with the tides and currents of life. And it’s great fun! Mermaids love to flow with the ocean. You can, too!

Be like a mermaid this summer and enjoy your journey!

Nikki Starcat Shields is an author, writing coach and leader of transformational writing retreats. She's also a licensed Pagan priestess. She invites you to a process of unfolding creativity. The world needs your unique wisdom - now is the time to finally take your inspired book idea and bring it forth into the world. Learn more at

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