What I Learned From A Three-Legged Dog About Talking to Myself


An “aha” moment can arrive at any time.

At the park, I watched a three-legged dog lurch full-speed after a tossed ball. Was he worrying about that lost leg? Nope!

What was his secret?

We were both in the park soaking up the sun.  But this dog was breathtakingly alive in the present.  I was ignoring the beauty around me worrying about family and business stuff. He was sniffing the wind, readying ready for the chase on his three good legs. I was mulling over problems.

Could I learn something here? Yes, say the experts.  Enjoy the present especially when times are tough. Become self aware and stay self-motivating. Here’s how:

  • Be aware of self –talk: Studies show we mentally loop negative thoughts–without knowing it. What you are saying to yourself at this very moment? Are you telling yourself you are worried or unhappy? That you can’t do what you set out to do?  Try changing the thought.
  • Notice your body: Are you warm, cold? Comfortable? A comfortable body is a less-stressed body. Take the time to take care of your body.
  • Stay aware of your emotions: Play name that feeling. Are you happy, distracted?  Negative emotions and thoughts can be interrupted by simply moving. Or laughing. Watch a funny movie. Better yet, call a funny friend and watch the funny movie with him.
  • Chase your ball, change your thought. The dog loves to chase balls on three legs–as he did on four. Name three simple actions that make you happy. Do one today. It’s tough to be happy and miserable at the same time. Now try creating and concentrating on positive thoughts.

Like the dog you can find joy in the present moment.  Tell yourself over and over that you can accomplish what you want to do! No matter your circumstances.

What do you do to change negative thoughts to positive? How do you stay motivated?

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