Today I wanted to make a post on the Red Cheetah Yoga Instagram account about gratitude.
I went to my hand little quote app, Brainy Quote, and searched for the “thankful” category.
The simple piece I was awarded with was perfection, it’s author Karl Barth.
It reads: Joy is the simplest form of gratitude.
How true this is.
After five years of dog ownership with my boyfriend, I decided to take it upon myself to take both dogs for a walk every day. It doesn’t have to be long, most of the time it’s just a quick trip around the block. And, yes, I know you dog owners reading out there may find this outrageous that I don’t take my babies on regular walks, and I do have an lame explanation. They both have easy access to the backyard whenever they wish due to the electric doggie door Al had put in for them when they were puppies. So, they go out whenever they want. Also, our shih tzu doesn’t handle a change of environment well at all, so usually it is Princess who has gone on car rides, and she has accompanied us to the beach while Apollo has stayed home and slept.
This year, I decided that was changing.
I know how good walking is in general for both humans and dogs, so I decided it was time for all of us to walk together. At first I would bring my phone, but then I realized that was silly.
My phone began to stay at home.
Then I realized I was brining too many keys with me. Two dogs and a bunch of keys were way too much to handle.
Off went my house key, and good bye to the cluster of gym and studio keys I have!
Today instead of going around only one block, we went in a loop encompassing three blocks. Apollo hates it when we encounter dogs in any way shape or form: seeing them, hearing them, smelling them. Princess, on the other hand, absolutely adores it. Rarely does she get scared of other dogs no matter their size: what a great example she is for all of us.
There is one great thing I have learned from taking our dogs out for walks for three days in a row: it simply makes them joyous to know they get to go somewhere with me!
It’s the feeling of being included, and knowing that they are my sole focus for the duration of the walk that makes them so happy. Dogs know that walks are specifically for them (I know I would probably not walk around my block if I didn’t have them!) and to see the joy in their eyes when I get the leashes out, that alone is reward enough for me: to see them so happy.
And, amazingly, today Apollo was actually excited to go for a walk! Apollo’s doggie communication is so much more subtle than the blatant and obvious miss Princess, I feel bad if I ever miss some little bit of communication with him. Today he was as spunky as ever and I adored seeing that! Taking them out for alone time and family time has really done wonders for their doggie spirits and souls, and I love to see them sparkle from the inside out from just a simple walk.
I was listening to Doreen Virtue on Hay House Radio today after I did some gift shopping at a local crystal shop and she said the most beautiful thing. Today we are still in Mercury Retrograde for another couple days, and where so many people tend to get fearful during this time, it actually is a beautifully energetic time to revisit things that have been set aside. It’s a time to do gentle and easy things for the spirit and soul, like meditation and even walking your dogs.
When Doreen said these beautiful things it floored me because I had just revisited some things like making my malas and making a post on the Cheetah Grounds Instagram giving an update as to our temporary hiatus due to the kitchen construction. It’s amazing to me how Doreen’s teachings are always so accurate and dead-on. I am so appreciative for all these things!
So, today and tomorrow, get curious about what it is in your life that gets you as excited as a dog gets when she sees her leash. That level of joy over the simple things in life is what we are meant to do on this planet, and it’s what we are meant to do for one another.
As Karl Barth said, joy is the simplest form of gratitude, and how right he was.
Keep choosing gratitude, and you choose joy.
Choose joy, and you choose gratitude.
They are one in the same, and they are what make you keep repeating the same awesome habits over and over again.