Since I'm a dog, I'm going to talk about attitude from a dog's point of view....
My Mum, she's a human, and like all humans comes with a multitude of human feelings and emotions. Although I have to say, she's a super positive person, loves life, enjoys her work, her friends and her time with me and my sis Gracie (and of course my kittie bros) whether we're playing, training, doing tricks, running agility, or just hanging out and cuddling on the couch.
She, like me, enjoys the positive of life, and likes to surround herself with people that feel the same. And she knows, just like I do, that being around positive definitely generates even more positive in her life.
I'm a dog, through and through; a sentient being, capable of a wide range of feelings, from fear, pain, love, excitement, nervousness and happiness to confidence, passiveness, sadness, jealousy and more. I'm not human and my feelings aren't as complex as a human's. But my feelings and resulting actions are definitely a direct result of my environment, whether that environment may be another dog or human, my Mum, a squirrel or deer, a smell, a noise, or anything else that peaks my senses and interest.
There are lots and lots of studies that show that dogs, like me, are sensitive to human emotions. One of our favorite books is Alexandria Horowitz's book, 'Inside of a Dog,' and it talks a lot about how dogs 'think' and 'feel' and why.
As a dog, my life pretty much revolves around my Mum and my environment. And since I spend most every waking and sleeping moment with my Mum, how she feels directly effects how I feel and how I behave.
If Mum gets upset (which is rare and nearly always short-lived) about something, I become concerned and immediately want to make her feel better. And, if she gets all excited about something good, I want to join in the celebration with her! Being the sheltie that I am, that means I start to spin, run around the house and look for a toy to play with, run around the cabin with it, and bark and bark in excitement!
The dictionary defines attitude as:
at·ti·tude[at-i-tood, -tyood] Show IPA
manner, disposition, feeling, position, etc., with regard to a person or thing; tendency or orientation, especially of the mind.
Attitude is everything in agility and in life!
Mum learned early on in our agility career, that when she goes out there and walks the course, comes back to my crate feeling really confident about our running plan, excited to run with me and looking forward to some fun agility with her best bud, I feel all that confidence and energy from her and am so ready to roll! I run faster, with more confidence, more energy and have lots and lots more fun.
And whether we Q or not, it doesn't matter, we always have a good time because we're together, both doing what we love. And if Mum messes up my run, she takes time to reflect, but always makes a plan for the next time to make it better and moves on.
Dogs can teach humans a lot about life and attitude in my opinion. We don't hang on to stuff, we always see the best in people, we always are looking for a fun time. And unless anything or anyone around us tries to alter our environment and consequently our feelings and behavior in a negative way, we will go on with life being the most full of life, happy dogs on the planet.
Life is about learning, experiencing and enjoying, moving on and not getting bogged down in those things that may bring us down. I fully believe that attitude directly effects how much you enjoy your life.
Take it from a dog, having a great attitude makes everything better in agility and in life!
For those of you who are visiting my blog for the first time, I'm Johann, the dog, a seven year old rescue and accomplished agility dog. My Mum, Leslie May, is my agility handler and trainer, pet business marketing consultant, co-host of my other blog Raise A Green Dog, best friend, constant companion, and has my heart through and through.
If you'd like to read about Attitude from other dog agility bloggers point of view visit the main group blog.