Search the Internet for top Psychologist Calgary tips and you’ll find some similarities and some differences in what these professionals see as top tips. Dig into their lists and you’ll uncover a common element in the majority of them – they involve other people.
You can’t give and receive gratitude without involving others. You can’t let go of the past without acknowledging the role others played in that past. You can’t enjoy the present without enjoying the others involved in your present.
Even those tips that are under personal control – like setting a purpose of the day or counting your blessings – at some point inevitably involve considering others. In short, if you were forced to pick the most important tip for more positive living it would in all probability involve the power of relationships with others
But what about those of us who are shy and reserved by nature and find it difficult to come out of ourselves and learn how to meet and interact with others?
Have you thought about getting a dog? If you have you will actually find a few articles on the Internet that point out that dogs can have significant psychological and social benefits on their owners.
First, many people who shy away from social contacts with people suffer from loneliness and dog ownership alleviates that. In addition, introverted people tend to focus on their own needs but owning a dog forces them to concentrate on the needs of the dog. Dogs are completely dependent on their human owners and that feeling of being needed has been shown to have physical benefits as well. Did you know dog owners have lower blood pressure and live longer than non-dog owners?
But it is the social benefit of dogs that bears mentioning here. Dogs are natural “people magnets.” Take a few moments and walk your neighborhood to observe people walking their dogs and you’ll see what we mean.
Neighbors who might never speak directly to each other under any circumstances will readily converse about a dog. Even people out walking without a dog will stop and engage you in pleasant conversation about your own dog.
If you are still not convinced visit a dog park in your area. Dog parks are popping up everywhere as secure places where owners can go and let their dogs romp and play with other dogs unfettered by restrictive leashes. And while the dogs romp about what do the owners do? They talk to each other.
Initially the conversations may be restricted to issues relating strictly to dog ownership but over time the talk evolves to more personal things about the owners themselves. Friendships are formed from bonds of common interest – the love of dogs.
There’s one final point to be made about how dogs can help you in your quest for a more meaningful life. Dogs are unfettered by the past and could care less about the future. They live strictly in the present and seem to savor each and every moment the way humans savor a fine wine or a fine meal.
Is getting a dog at the top of the list of Psychologist Calgary tips? Maybe not. But the increasing number of therapy dogs showing up in senior retirement communities and hospitals certainly bears witness to their positive psychological and social impact on those who come into contact with them.
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