Reframing the Negative: A Lesson From My Dog
I have two dogs, Siena is 14 and Leo is 11. They have always been complete opposites…except they both like treats. Everything else is basically opposite. Now that they are older, those differences seem to grow even wider, especially when it comes to pace and walks. Siena is fired up with lots of energy and a skip in her step, while Leo walks as if the weight of the world is on his shoulders. Walking two dogs at this different of a pace was starting to drive me crazy and stretching my arms out so I was like a Stretch Armstrong doll. (Yes, I know some of you may not be old enough to remember this amazing toy. ☺)
I decided I had to change things up or I would go nuts. I decided to walk them separately so that they could both get a walk that was satisfying to them. I found myself still irritated, “Give, give, give, that’s all I ever do. Now I really won’t have time to meditate in the morning.” Ick, another mindset that wasn’t very satisfying.
This morning I decided to give myself lots of time while walking them separately instead of trying to jam two walks in the same amount of time. What I realized is that walking Leo was meditative. If I wasn’t leaning forward, trying to get somewhere (even though there was no where to “get”), then in fact, he was actually giving me the opportunity to meditate. And meditate where I prefer – outside! So today I did a walking meditation with Leo and I found great delight in my dogs’ differences. Siena gave me the opportunity to get my heart rate up and Leo the opportunity to ground myself.
Where are there things or people in your life that are frustrating or irritating? Where is difference feeling like it is getting in the way versus giving you an opportunity? What might happen if you repurpose or take a new perspective? What beauty might unfold?