Believe it or not, we all can learn from dogs! To me there is nothing more rewarding than being greeted with such enthusiasm by my best four-footed friends. The physical expression of exuberance can be seen with tails waying, playful bouncing and smiling faces. Such unconditional affection is something we humans could do well in practicing.
According to research studies, there are many positive health benefits when humans spend time around dogs and other domestic pets. These pets can lower levels of stress which can contribute to lower blood pressure and less dramatic levels of depression. Now, we are learning how dogs have an innate ability to detect impending seizures, as well as provide needed assistance to the elderly. You may be familiar with Theraphy Dogs, Service Dogs and Canine Companions. Using their special gifts, dogs are a great asset to the human race. And that is just a small portion of what we can learn from dogs.
Dogs provide crystal clear, non-judgmental feedback on how we are living in this moment. They know when we're sad, upset, happy, frustrated, troubled, or in pain. They accept that about us and interact with us to help us. Humans navigate through life using their eyes and ears. Dogs however, engage with their world MUCH more fully, utilizing not only all their physical senses, but responding to the energies that surround them.
To learn from dogs, think of them as your living, breathing, thinking, feeling and interactive mirror. Dogs as mirrors can be your greatest teachers.
Many people enjoy dog training, and certainly as a hobby it can be a great stress reducer. However dogs, because of their ability to "read" us energetically, can provide that perfect reflection of what's happening with us in our lives at this moment. We also can learn from them by observing how they live their lives, manage their environment, and deal with their challenges.
Many of our clients come to us because something is "missing,” their lives are not "in balance", or they're stressed about their life circumstances. We show them how the lessons from our sled dogs can apply to their lives, and they can practice them with their own pets.
Dogs teach us how to live our lives with a positive perspective to focus on the future. We develop self-assurance and trust through our interaction with dogs. Like sled dogs, we can learn to persevere no matter what life throws our way. What we learn from dogs is that they have the intuitive sense to know what we need to learn. By reflecting our moods and energy level we can see clearly what the message is. Each person develops a special relationship with their dog, and the lesson learned will be how to successfully interact with any unique circumstance life may bring.
Life circumstances like chronic pain, health conditions or other forms of personal adversity are there, and are what they are. However, choosing to react negatively is optional. The dogs show us how to move beyond the stress and suffering, maintain a positive perspective live completely and joyously. What wonderful lessons to learn from dogs. Give them a chance and they can provide a great reflection in the mirror.
About the Author:
Liz Parrish is known as "Iditarod's Littlest Musher." From a difficult start beating childhood cancer, scoliosis, fibromyalgia and other chronic health conditions, she thrives while seeking challenges. She left the corporate world to follow her passion of training her own team of dogs to run in the Iditarod before she turned 50 years old. You can get free training about how to BeTheLeadDog.