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Take the time to notice

This picture = me at the beginning of this blog, and then at the end!

So, initially when I sat down to write, today, I had a completely different agenda. To be honest, I actually had about two paragraphs typed up, before deciding to take a break, in order to make sure I made Rudy, my dog, a priority... Now for those of you that know me, or have seen my Instagram & Facebook, you are aware that I absolutely LOVE my Rudy - he is more or less, my child! It's no secret that I enjoy spending time with him, taking him on walks & car rides, playing frisbee, and just loving on him! However, I will admit - it isn't always easy and sometimes, I have to really make a concerted effort to make him, and his needs, a priority. Some days I have so much to do, and/or I am on auto-pilot, that I just go from one thing, to the next, to the next, and so on... Days like these, are the ones that I often go hours before realizing my poor dog, hasn't been out for more than 10-15 minutes, which makes me feel horrible! How could I forget about my baby!?

Then it hit me -- I don't do a good job of making myself, and my own needs, a priority either! Going through different recovery programs, and therapy, the importance and benefit of self-care has been stressed and reiterated over and over, but even without - I know better! If you really think about it, it makes sense! If we don't take care of ourselves, we can't be our BEST SELF for others, and eventually we may not be able to be there, at all, for others. This concept reminds me of a quote I have come across many times, but until recently, never really clicked - "You can't pour from an empty cup"...just think about it. :)

So, back to my walk with Rudy... After a few minutes, I started to realize - this walk isn't just for Rudy, it's for me too! Now, I will acknowledge, the initial reason I set down my laptop, in the middle of blogging, was to make sure I got my rambunctious Australian Shepard, some fresh air and exercise. However, I not only realized that I needed those two things, as well, but it was much more than that...

This simple walk was also a time (removed from the distractions of work, social media, terrorizing the cat (haha) and many other tasks) that we were able to give each other undivided attention - something all pets and human beings crave and deserve. Not to mention, I was able to practice some mindfulness by really engaging my senses and all the things happening in nature, and all around me. I actually noticed the smells of freshly cut lawns, heard various bugs and birds, noticed a neighbor's new car - things that I often don't pay attention to and probably miss on a daily basis.

ANYWAY - I know I have been rambling, and going on and on, but I do have a take-away for you...

Take time to really engage in your life! Even if it's just a few minutes here and there - it's important! Take sometime for yourself, away from routine, and really take notice in some of the simple (and maybe not so simple) things that you often miss - it might really open your eyes, and hopefully, it will bring you some joy, and maybe even make you a bit more appreciative of different things. All of the things around you, make up your environment, and the world we all live in, so maybe if we can take a few minutes to appreciate our surroundings, we can learn to appreciate ourselves, and our needs, a bit more too! We affect our surroundings, and our surroundings affect us. Therefore, we should take time to appreciate both! After all, they do call it "the circle of life".

Take care and have a terrific rest of your Thursday!

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