Walk Your Dog A Thousand Miles

Here’s a story that may illustrate the point that you can change the way your brain and mind process information. I offer it here because what I see is the misunderstanding how the mind works. There is great potential in knowing and understanding how the mind can work to our benefit.


So a few months ago we got a new dog. He’s a sheepadoodle. You see his picture at the top of this blog. His name is Satish, which means love and devotion. Half sheepdog and half poodle, he’s got a blend of both behaviors and characteristics.

He has grown fast from a small puppy to a fairly hefty fifty pounds at five months of age. He loves the action wherever he can find it with people or other dogs.  He is strong and fast and stubborn. Either he is walking me or I am walking him. Always one of us is in control. After getting to a place of despair, thinking I would never get him trained properly, I turned to a professional dog trainer to help me figure out what to do. 


The point of my story is that I had no idea how to train a dog. It really is not about the dog. It is about the trainer! As a novice trainer I am realizing I need to learn how to train the dog to behave as I want him to. 

It takes instruction, intention and practice to train a dog. You literally have to walk him a thousand miles to have him learn the behaviors you want him to display. At the same time I have to become the trainer the dog will pay attention to. There is a skill to this. My trainer calls it having the sonar so the dog gets the vibe. Patience, tenacity, understanding and love all play a part in getting to where I want to be in my relationship with Satish.

The same idea applies to your brain and thus your behaviors. If you wish to change something, for example, they way you react to certain experiences, then you need instruction, intention and practice.

The human brain is very malleable to change. The connections that have been formed by your brain are simply energetic connections between neurons. No matter how long they have been firing together the connections can be changed as you desire.

So, stories you and I have told ourselves for years about our life can be changed. Just like training my dog to act in a certain way. It just takes patience and practice, tenacity and love.

The hopeful aspect about this idea is that you nor I don’t have to be stuck in old patterns if we don’t want to be. Many times we operate from these old ideas unconsciously and automatically. Our mind has stored the patterns to be brought up and used depending on what circumstances we face.

So, to change our patterns takes a conscious act to create something new. We have the choice to choose rather than allow old patterns to drive our behaviors.

I’ve learned from my new puppy (does not seem like a puppy at fifty pounds) that there is a natural resistance to change. The same old ways of doing things are inbred over generations. What we don’t realize is that these patterns are only valid for as long as we accept them as being valid.

You change your life when you use the proper tools to change old patterns of your brain and mind. 


P.S. I am considering doing a short (30-45 minutes) introductory webinar on the topic of changing our patterns. Would you be kind enough to let me know if you would be interested by answering this one question?

Click here to answer.