When I was walking my dogs the other day, I walked by a church that had a sign out front which said, “Be the person your dog thinks you are.” I looked down at Hope and Harvey and all I could do was smile. Like many dog owners know, dogs will greet their owners each morning as if they are the most important person in the world and this new day is amazing and full of infinite and wonderful possibilities.
As I walked home, I started to think a little about whether I lived up to not just my dogs’ expectations about who I was but whether I met my own expectations about who I should be and how I should behave toward others. I think I do pretty well but know that during periods of stress or frustration, I can be impatient, less friendly and less forgiving than I would like to be. I try to be aware of when it happens and think about ways to remind myself to not let any situation impact the way I deal with others. I don’t think anyone is perfect, but I also don’t think that any of us can let our circumstances be an excuse for how we treat others.
The other thought I had was back to the way our dogs approach each new day. They don’t appear to bogged down in negative thoughts like “what if they don’t feed me today” or “what if I don’t get to go on that long walk” whereas I can sometimes begin the day thinking about things that might make my day less pleasant than it should be such as dealing with traffic or being over-scheduled. Hope and Harvey truly live in the present. I need to be more intentional to stay in the moment more and not over-think what I can’t control or obsess over what may happen in the day to come. Maybe having a pea-sized brain is sometimes a positive.
This week’s selection is:
Belfast (Prime or Apple TV+)
A semi-autobiographical film which chronicles the life of a working class family and their young son’s childhood during the tumult of the late 1960s in the Northern Ireland capital.