Saturday, December 27, 2014

New Year's Mindfulness Intentions (Resolutions) for You and Your Pet

2015 is approaching and most of us think about New Year’s resolutions. I have made zillions of resolutions, most of which fall by the wayside within a few days let alone a few months. But, together we can make some resolutions for you and your pet that can last.

Here is a Petitation that can help you make plans for you and your pet for 2015.  Just click on each of the steps to learn more.

First sit in a Petitation posture with your back upright yet relaxed and your pet near you or your pet in view.  If this isn’t possible, just envision your pet.

Think about a time when you’re particularly happy with your pet. Sit with these thoughts for a few moments to move into a relaxed and peaceful place.

What kinds of positive things did you enjoy with your pet over the past year?  Did you take him on trips? Did you enjoy these vacations together? Did you go to the beach? Hiking? The dog park? Did you hold her lovingly in your arms?   Did you spend nights in front of the fire with your cat in your lap purring peacefully? Did you spend time just hanging out with him by your side? Has she led to conversations with interesting people on dog walks? Did you brush her teeth regularly? Did you spend time doing the petitations with him?

How does thinking about this this make you feel? Do you feel a smile on your face? Expansiveness? Joy? Your heart filling up? Does it help your shoulders, your back, your stomach feel more relaxed?
Next you will spend some time thinking about challenges you had with your pet over the past year.  The goal is not to beat yourself up, but rather identify areas that you would like to change.

Maybe you were too hard on him when he misbehaved or when you were in a particularly bad mood? Perhaps you didn’t take him out as often as you would have liked? Maybe you didn’t go on any vacations with her? Maybe you were more angry with him than you would like to be?  Did you leave him alone more than you would like? Maybe you didn’t brush her teeth regularly? Maybe you didn’t follow up on the things you were learning in dog school? We’ve all faced some of these challenges.

Does thinking about the difficulties with your pet tighten up your muscles in your face, jaw, back or shoulders? Does it bring worry lines to your face?

Finally, you will think about both the positive things you did and the things that didn’t go as well as you want and challenge yourself to make changes in the new year. Only identify a few changes so that they are doable. I, for one, want to practice at home the exercises from doggy school, spend lots of time Petitating with them and more time with them on long hikes (even though I hate the thought of seeing snakes—one of my greatest fears).

Let’s take a moment to check-in….Do you feel positive about the New Year’s intentions you have identified?  Is your body relaxed or have you gotten more tense?  If you feel more tense, you may want to re-look at your intentions and make sure they are reasonable.  The goal is to find things that are going to result in positive changes, not to make you feel overwhelmed.

We would love to hear your experiences below as we move into the new year!

Good luck over the next year and we’ll check back in same time next year.

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