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12 Small Pleasures Only Dog People Are Familiar With

12 Small Pleasures Only Dog People Are Familiar With

What is your description of the perfect friend? One that loves you unconditionally? Someone who forgives easily, stays close by your side, and is a really good listener? Well, I have described my dog. Who is, in essence, one of the best friends I could ask for. He brings me joy, and I know for a fact there are millions of other people who feel just the same as I do. Here are 12 small pleasures that dogs give their owners.

1. They give unconditional love

It is a wonderful feeling to be loved unconditionally. Dogs don’t care if we look perfect, say the right things, or act distracted. They love us no matter what.

2. They’re a faithful companion

Dogs don’t get tired of us. They enjoy our company. If they had their way, they would be beside us at all times.

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3. They understand us without speaking

They get us. We don’t have to explain ourselves to our dogs. If we are in a bad mood, they comfort us. If we are happy, they are happy with us.

4. They’re the best listener in the world

Anything we need to say, they’ll listen to it. If we need to blow off steam or say a secret aloud, they have us covered. At times, they seem to like our voices as much as we do.

5. They let us become a good teacher

We burst with pride when our dogs know the simplest of commands. They give us the opportunity from puppy stage to adult stage to experience the gift of being a teacher.

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6. They appreciate of nature

Our dogs get us outside. We get to witness beautiful sunrises and sunsets thanks to our dogs. We can watch how the sky turns different colors during the day and observe beautiful stars at night. We hear birds singing, the wind whistling, and crickets chirping.

7. They’re the best shotgun rider around

All we have to say is “ride” and our dogs are ready to go. They know when you grab your keys they might get a chance of coming along. When we can take them, they hop right up in the front passenger seat and sit happily going down the road.

9. They are a calming force

No matter what we are going through, they are right there beside us offering silent support. We know we all can have an awful day from time to time; however, when we stroke our dog’s head, we feel some of our stress alleviate. Their calm presence rubs off on us.

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10. They show us how quickly time passes

Our dogs teach us just how quickly times goes by. One minute they are puppies, and then we blink and they have become grown ups. While we are busy with our lives, and we know time is passing, we may not realize how precious time is. Then one day we look at our dogs and we realize they have become older, and this makes us appreciate every moment a little more.

11. They are always happy to see us

It’s hard in life to find someone who is always happy to see you. Our dogs, are. They are overjoyed just because we came home or because we are willing to take them on a walk or run. Sometimes they are happy just because we entered the same room they are in.

12. They forgive easily

We all mistakes; however, not everyone we know is very forgiving of our mistakes. Our dogs forgive us. Over and over, they forgive us. They don’t hold a grudge. They live in the moment. If we make a mistake, they forgive us and move right on.

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If you are a dog owner, you are most likely already aware of all the pleasures our dogs can give us. They are our constant companions and faithful friends. They teach us so many life lessons. They bring us much joy, and we are lucky to have them.

Featured photo credit: Arson Dog Daisy/State Farm via flickr.com

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Tomi Rues

Adjunct college teacher, notebook/journal designer, author

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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