Maintaining Seeking

4 Life Lessons To Take from Our Pets

We wouldn’t be without our Bichon Frise, Freya. Before she came into our lives, we had a white cat (except when he went under the berries at the bottom of the garden) called Jasper.

They’ve both taught us things we weren’t expecting them to. Pets are clever like that. I could include many things in this article, but I’ve boiled it down to four of the most important.

Living in the moment

When did you last see your pet looking at their watch and fretting about the time? (I’m sure my dog Freya has a watch somewhere as she is always right there five minutes before dinner — that’s another story.)

No doubt you have read about mindfulness and the power of living in the moment. Pets are superb at doing it, yet we humans need to practice it constantly to be able to get even close.

The past is gone, and the future is yet to roll out. Today is here though, and living in today, and yes, in this very moment, is something our pets can teach us.

Getting messy is fun!

Freya is a past master at this. During the summer, I cleared out a couple of half barrels in the garden, ready for fresh earth. Now, Freya loves fresh earth. I made the mistake of leaving said barrels unattended.

Five minutes later, I found her with an earthy mustache and face. She looked like she was wearing black boots. Four of them. And she was loving it.

She did need a bath as there was no way to get it all off without creating a mess. But I thought about the fun she’d had the next time I got caught out while cycling and the rain came down. Instead of trying to avoid the puddles, I went through every one I could find. At speed. And got soaked.

And I loved it! All thanks to our Freya.

Sleep is a good thing

How many of us are guilty of eating into our sleep time to get more done? Cats and dogs sleep for many hours a day. Sure, they don’t have work or other chores to think about. But they do have their priorities right.

Sleep regenerates and renews us. I feel grumpy if I don’t get enough shuteye. I’ve been focusing on putting that book down, settling down earlier, and even going to bed way earlier than usual if I need it. It works. It’s the best way to set myself up for the following day.

Don’t forget playtime

I love playing with Freya, but she will just as happily play on her own for a bit if she wants to. Downtime is vital for all of us. “Play” can mean different things. Maybe you love reading, knitting, tending to the garden, jogging… whatever you do, this is your playtime. Build some into each day.

In 2020, we’ve all learned the vital importance of taking care of ourselves. Learning how to stay in the moment is more important now than ever. Let your pet inspire you!

-Allison Whitehead

Photo by Joe Caione on Unsplash

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