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The Key to Happiness, Joy and Success

What a joy!  Sometimes turning the smallest hinge can open the BIGGEST doors in our lives.  Turning lives around quickly is my specialty, what I love doing the most.

Just this past week, I worked with a client who was so stressed out she could hardly hold it together and was ready to quit altogether… nothing was working for her.  Her finances were terrible, her cat just died, she got bad news about a lawsuit she was involved in, couldn’t get anyone to help her… her situation was dire indeed.

Yet, in just one hour, she made a HUGE shift – primarily due to this one critically important KEY to being happier, healthier and more successful.  She’s making new connections, is feeling enormously better, is Out Of The Box and making fantastic changes for herself.  She feels more empowered and is definitely happier.

Want to know what the Key is?

Simply put, it’s the importance and the magic of the He(ART) of Play.

It’s true for our animals too.  Did you know that every being on the planet plays?  Not just when they are little, but to stay healthy, sharp and balanced.   They continue to play all through their adult years until they are ready to pass on.  In fact, we often know when they are ill because their playful nature dies within them.

The tragedy is that too many of us die within before our time has come.  Why? Because we simply forgot to play.

One of the most important gifts animals give to US is that they invite us to play with them.  They demand it. They beg us for play time. They interupt our busy-ness, our seriousness, our fussyness, our obsessively stressful lives and invite us to drop our burdens and be silly, funny, lighthearted and joyful again.  To embrace the simple pleasures of life, to love ourselves and each other enough to let our guard down.  When we do, the burden of all our troubles is lifted for a time and we find ourselves again.

Every good relationship craves play, and healthy play together builds strong relationships.

On The Real Dr Doolittle Show this week, I interviewed the caretakers for The Gibbon Conservation Center.  Wow!  Did you know that the gibbons create duets and sing in chorus?  Amazing.  Their family groups are very similar to ours, their society is remarkable, and their lessons for us are profound.

 

If your animal has been begging you for play time, then make it a priority to accept their invitation.  It’s as much for YOUR health and well-being as it is for theirs.

How do you play?  What do you enjoy?  I want to know!  Let’s learn from each other.

Much love to you and your critters,

Val,  The Play Master

“A bird doesn’t sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.”  Diane Ackerman

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One of the ways Einstein and I play is when we’re on our walks. There are so many opportunities for play! For instance, we often go to the neighborhood kids park because he LOVES sliding down the kids slides! He climbs up the stairs lickety split, then goes to the stairs, and comes flying down, leaping off the bottom and racing around to go back and do it again. He also loves climbing the plastic rock wall. There is a concrete retaining wall that has a gentle slope up, levels off and then goes down, it goes quite high – almost above my head — for about 100 feet. He loves to walk the wall. It’s like a gymnastics balance beam for dogs! Another mental challenge game I give him is a Follow the Leader game, where I walk quickly around the trees or posts or poles to see if 1) he’s paying attention and is following me, and 2) if he gets wrapped around them, he has to figure out how to untangle himself. Great fun! He’s so good at it I rarely ever trip him up anymore, and he’s so proud of himself for mastering it too. We always come home feeling refreshed and happy. What do you enjoy doing with your special friends?
Val

One of the ways Einstein and I play is when we’re on our walks. There are so many opportunities for play! For instance, we often go to the neighborhood kids park because he LOVES sliding down the kids slides! He climbs up the stairs lickety split, then goes to the stairs, and comes flying down, leaping off the bottom and racing around to go back and do it again. He also loves climbing the plastic rock wall. There is a concrete retaining wall that has a gentle slope up, levels off and then goes down, it goes quite high – almost above my head — for about 100 feet. He loves to walk the wall. It’s like a gymnastics balance beam for dogs! Another mental challenge game I give him is a Follow the Leader game, where I walk quickly around the trees or posts or poles to see if 1) he’s paying attention and is following me, and 2) if he gets wrapped around them, he has to figure out how to untangle himself. Great fun! He’s so good at it I rarely ever trip him up anymore, and he’s so proud of himself for mastering it too. We always come home feeling refreshed and happy. What do you enjoy doing with your special friends?
Val

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