Of course we love them deeply…
Pets tug on our heartstrings in a unique and deep way. As I write, the kitten that I fostered in the summer, Baby (who is now a permanent fixture), is being spayed and is just going into surgery. Now, I’m all clued up on prepping for surgery and for managing my emotions and nerves around it (I even wrote a blog post all about it – go here to read the post), but, I’ll admit that I can still feel the ‘tug’ of nerves. Maybe it’s her plucky nature and how well she got over her cat flu, or maybe it’s how she makes me laugh when she carries her soft toy like a prized catch around the house, or maybe it’s how she likes to curl up by my head every morning and gently purr. I don’t know exactly how, but it’s clear that she’s burrowed deeply into my heart with her sweet ways and I can’t imagine life here without her.
.. but can that become our downfall?
It can seem that the more we love our pets, the more our happiness can become tied to theirs. This is fine when all is well, but it can become dangerous territory when things aren’t going so well for them or we have concerns about them. I have seen many of my clients ride an emotional rollercoaster of nerves, worry and fear when their beloved pet is unwell or unhappy.
If the pet has a bad day, their person despairs, but if they have a good day then the person startes to beam a happy smile and become more optimistic again. It can be exhausting for them, to say the least. But, many just ‘put up with it’ as part of being loving caring owners.
This theme is something I’ve pondered a lot lately, how we can be so deeply affected by our loved ones and the situations around us. I even wrote a blog post about it last week over at my other website, The Thought Gardener, looking at how to become unconditionally happy (which is my new obsession these days).
How do we deal with this – do we even need to?
Now some people would argue that it’s just being caring to have concern or worries about our pets and that it’s somehow uncaring to NOT be deeply emotionally involved when are pets have issues.
Of course there are times when we get upset and emotional, and it can be overwhelming and that is ok. It’s how we respond to it that is important. If worry or fear becomes a pattern we can feel like we’re being put through the wringer every time something happens to our pet. It can be an excuse for letting our worries run wild and we can become quite anxious and even obsessed – worrying what we could do differently etc.
I like to think that part of our role as a caring pet owner is to navigate our emotions so we can stay clear headed and balanced emotionally and thus be a strong positive presence for our pets in their time of need.
Just change those patterns of thought.
The good news is that we can change these patterns and get out of the loop of needing things around us to be ok in order for us to feel ok. If we have a tendancy towards being anxious or panicy, we can work with that to become less easily thrown off balance and quicker to return to it. It may take a little time and practice but it is possible. I have seen it time and time again – my clients feeling relieved and better able to handle the troubling situations that they are presented with.
If you know that you tend to over worry if your pet is ill or has a health issue of some kind, there are many ways to find emotional balance. Whilst I know that for best results working with a professional like myself is best, you can also make a lot of headway with self help. One of my favourite ways is EFT tapping (bet you guessed that if you read these posts regularly). You can try it for yourself here and here. Just pick a worry or concern and start tapping to feel some relief.
You can also use other techniques, such as meditation, to calm your mind.
Also, make sure you are have a good self care strategy in place (I’ve talked about this before too in previous posts, but it worth saying more than once). Really, in stressful times you need to look after yourself more, or you’ve less to give to those you love. Do you notice that you forget to nurture yourself when you’re stressed or upset? Well, that’s just when you need it most.
It’s becomes clearer and clearer to me how we can navigate our pet’s issues and stresses so much better when we work with our emotions and take great care of ourselves, (as well as caring well those beloved pets, of course). As well as working with people and their pets personally, I’m now creating an online course, so I can share some more detailed strategies with those of you who need it and I’m really excited about how it’s shaping up.
If you want to know more about it, just sign up to my email list, below this post, if you haven’t already, (you’ll get access to a free video series about using EFT for pets) and you’ll be amongst the first to know when I have more details about it.
I always like to share a video with my posts, so here is my video from the post I mentioned earlier where I share my tips (and some EFT tapping) for ‘unconditional happiness’.
I truly believe you can create joy and happiness in your life, whatever your circumstances and situations. To me, that’s priceless and, when you’re happy, your pet feels it and it has a positive influence on them too, so it’s a win win situation. Try it for yourself and see what you think.
To watch the video click here or on the image below.
What do you think?
I love to hear your thoughts. Do you find yourself overwhelmed with emotion if you pet is unwell, or, how do you stay balanced in tough times?
If you’ve tapped along with the video, see how you felt afterwards and let me know what shifts you had?
Just leave your comment below.
Feel free to share this post and video with anyone you know who will benefit from it.