When our dog struggles we reach out to others for help. We are willing to gain the necessary skills and utilize the necessary tools to bring them a sense of balance. We support them. We love them and we do what we need to do to help them out. We talk to professionals and our friends. We join classes and clubs, investing in the healthy future of our canines.
So why are we so hesitant to do the same for ourselves?
The truth is: you are worth it. Be willing to help yourself out. Support a friend who is struggling. Make mental and emotional health normal. Talk. Heal. Gain the necessary tools to find some balance for yourself.
I still struggle Every. Single. Day.
I beat myself up for a past that caused a lot of people a lot of hurt. Hurt that was given freely but came with a huge price. I understand now that my actions and emotions were a fallout behaviour of a deep rooted trauma that affected every relationship in my life. Except my relationship with animals. I understood them. I was willing to help them through their struggles. Through those deep rooted traumas. Help them find a better way, a new reaction and a sense of calm. I did this through big lifestyle changes. Some corrections and a ton of reward for better behaviours.
It didn’t take long for me to realize I needed to do the same for myself if I was ever going to start to heal. So I began to invest in myself with the same passion and intensity that I had been investing in dogs for years. I got real. Sometimes it sucked and sometimes I wasn’t sure I’d make it through all the dust I was kicking up by merely changing everything about my reactions and my emotional responses. People don’t handle change well. Ask me how I know. No, we don’t give into the process of change the way most animals are willing to. And it is a process. It’s not an overnight fix, it’s a monsoon. It builds and builds, eventually taking out everything in its path until the winds shift and we are able to calm the storm. It’s from there that we must rebuild, and if we don’t rebuild with a solid foundation, we are doomed to repeat the same habits of our cause and effect.
While my struggles don’t necessarily affect my ability to train or my over all happiness, they are just there. Constantly threatening to spill over into my successes and remind me who I used to be. I just have to keep reminders in place and rewards for the successes. Just like we do with the dogs going through our behaviour modification programs. Checks and balances. Always balances.
So if you or your dog need a reminder here it is: the truth is we are all a little struggly at times. We all have our regrets, our pasts and our do-overs. That doesn’t make you unworthy. That makes you human. As for your dog, show them the way. Don’t flinch. Don’t waiver. Be their best friend and guide. Be their family. I have mine and my dog has me. 🔮🐾💜