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6 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting A Dog

6 Things I Wish I Knew Before Getting A Dog

A dog is a bundle of joy and unconditional love, as well as a wet nose which is going to be always in your business. The decision to get a dog should be taken after some consideration and serious talk with your room mate(s). I know this because I got a dog when I unexpectedly fell in love with one, so I was completely unprepared for everything that followed.

As someone who never regrets the decision, I do wish I knew some things before I got the dog.

1. Dog-proof your home

You know that moment when your kid starts crawling or walking and your things are never safe again? Well, the same happens with a dog. The moment your new pet sets paw in your house, he is going to spot all the things he should never touch and destroy them. To prevent this from happening, pet-proof your house. Get on your knees and look around. All the fragile items must be lifted on upper shelves and all the potentially dangerous items, such as wires, have to be secured and hidden.

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Second, you need to set things straight with everyone living in the house regarding the limits of the new dog. Where is he allowed, where he isn’t and so on. If not everyone is on the same page with the dog, when it arrives, you might have problems in the future.

2. Be ready to spend money

Regardless if you adopt or buy a dog, be ready to pay more than a fee. A dog is another living creature, so he will need food, toys, neutering, micro chipping, training classes and many more. The vet is going to become a constant in your life, as dogs also get sick and require treatments. Vaccinations and fleas prevention are other monthly costs.

Leashes, collars and other dog equipment are other things which can become a little pricey, even if you will probably need just two of them, in different sizes. If you live in multiple season areas your dog might need coats. Add to these costs the cost of random treats and toys, because who can resist spoiling the little one?!

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3. Learn what a dog can and can’t eat

Dogs can eat some of the foods humans eat, but there are also foods that can easily harm them or even kill them. It’s very important to know the food requirements of your dog before you get him. Even if you won’t be giving him human foods, not all the dog foods are the same.

While most dogs will eat pretty much anything, there are good and bad dog foods on the market, just like we have good food and junk food. You have to learn the nutritional requirements of your dog to be able to choose the best foods for him and to be able to save your pocket: most dogs don’t actually need expensive grain free or gluten-free foods. By the way, the price is not an indication of the quality of the dog food, in many cases.

4. Puppies are little devils in disguise

Puppies are cute… because if they wouldn’t be, you would probably kill them! If you get a puppy you have to be ready for chewing, peeing, pooping and crying for several weeks. Indeed, puppies grow fast, but when you are sleep deprived, your couch is being pooped on, the floor is covered in pee and you are covered in stain remover, that puppy really needs to grow fast and be super-cute.

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5. Dogs are very social

Dogs are social creatures and they need you and other members of the family. Cesar Millan’s stories with the pack leader are totally true! Dogs fall in love with their family members and don’t bear solitude. If you like to travel a lot you need to know you will have to take the dog with you from now on.

When you have a dog you will never be alone again, not even in the bathroom. Or, especially in the bathroom. However, despite the social nature of dogs, you need to train them and socialize them, if you want to have a friendly, well-behaved dog.

6. Your life will never be the same again

Dogs can turn your life upside down and will cause lots of trouble to you. But after you get a dog your life will never be the same again. You won’t be able to give up on the furry creature and it will become a real family member. You will be ready to do anything for him and he will do anything for you. There is no bigger joy than arriving home and finding your hyper-active dog happy to see you again.

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Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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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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