Weekends are generally when I mow the yard at my house. This chore has actually become less frustrating once I was willing to change my thinking about a few things. Like opportunities. The most important being I get to mow my yard because I have a yard. Difficult to remember when the temperature is 90+ degrees and the humidity is not too far from that. Still better than last summer when we got no rain and my yard just burned up and the weeds tried to take over like zombies. They just kept pushing on in. Zombie Summer. But today the weather is perfect. The sort of weather one waits for all summer. Cooler, drier, sunny, with a Munnings sky overhead.
Where do the dogs fit in? Opportunities. Yes, opportunities.
My neighbors on both sides have yappy dogs. Great opportunity to teach ‘leave it!!’ Yes, I AM more fun than fence running “but MOOOOMMMM, this is fun too!!”
I admit that I am not always consistent with this since they are having fun and burning energy. Plus, Ziva becomes delirious with happiness while hopping along the fence line barking her head off. It took so long to get her to ‘happy’ that I forget that I am encouraging a bad habit.
And they are far from stupid. And far from deaf. They can hear a piece of kibble drop from the backyard during a UK basketball game but I can stand three feet from them and say “leave it!” with no response whatsoever. Until I realized that I DO need to tell them everything, that “down-stay” means “down-stay”. And that I DO mean it.
Persistence has finally paid off. For the most part.
Once they also realized ‘leave it’ was not forever, now they are much better at listening AND obeying, like Beltone came to visit one day while I was at work. Pleasing me is now winning more often than not. Has it been a frustrating, infuriating process? Hard work? Absolutely. But definitely worth it.
Keeping a glass is half full mentality is difficult and sometimes I just want to smack someone into next week when I hear or read something like this:
“A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty.”
― Winston Churchill
Each opportunity for change is about perception. Change is hard but my mind can twist it into facing a horde of Klingons while holding a dicey light saber. Yea, ponder that for a moment.