When we are worried, the talk in our heads move into overdrive. The thoughts start swirling a mile and minute and just when you thought you had imagined the worst scenario possible, something even more dreadful pops into your mind. This is the time to stop and Tell Your Pet about what is making you worry and see what they can do to help.
This can involve any pet that you have a relationship with – dog, cat, horse, lizard, gerbil, chicken, goat – anything that you love. If you have talked to them before, they will be ready to listen to you again, and be happy to help.
“An animal’s eyes have the power to speak a great language.” –Martin Buber
Decide What the Real Issue Is
When you are getting ready to tell your pet friend what you are struggling with, you are going to have to decide how to start the story. When I get into worry mode, usually I have many things swirling in my head and it’s hard to pull out the one thing that I need to work on. This exercise will help you to really put words to what the issue is that your need to solve.
“I have studied many philosophers and many cats. The wisdom of cats is infinitely superior.” –Hippolyte Taine
Tell Your Pet – They Don’t Judge
As you talk to your pet, you are going to notice that when you start talking it’s really hard to get going. We are talking out loud and we are sure that someone is going to judge us. That is the beauty of the love between you and an animal – they won’t judge you. You may be judging yourself and that’s why it’s so hard to admit things out loud, but trust me, your pet is going to listen and feel the emotions that are coming off of you, and then they are going to help you to feel better.
“I call my horses ‘divine mirrors’—they reflect back the emotions you put in. If you put in love and respect and kindness and curiosity, the horse will return that.” –Allan Hamilton
Look into Their Eyes
If you need to take a break when you are telling your story, don’t be afraid to look into their eyes. You might need to have the tissues near by, because they will most likely be looking at you with such compassion that you will know you are talking to a true friend. Maybe you will have an energetic listener like my German Shepherd Ripley, she moves her head back and forth through the whole story. Then when she lays her head on my lap, I know that she understands and is there to offer support.
Accept the “It’s going to be okay” message
Whether you get a lick from your dog friend, a forehead to forehead moment from your horse, or a hug from your best friend, accept their advice that “It’s going to be okay”. Now that you have shared your worry, and you have given real words to your fear, see if for what it is. It’s something that you can deal with now, and if you need any emotional help again your pet friend is going to be right there with you!
Have you tried talking to your pet about something that is making you worry? How did it go? Please let’s us know in the comments below.