As a graduate of puppy kindergarten, I know the feeling of pride that accompanies a hard-earned diploma. It didn’t matter that I lunged on my leash and chewed on my classmate’s ear during the graduation ceremony. My Mama was proud—and that’s all that mattered!
Thankfully, I’m older and wiser now. My advice for new graduates? Think like a dog. You’ll work smarter, be happier and find the success you deserve. Here are some practical tips:
- Concentrate your time and energy on the things that you love and that you are good at—the things that make you “zoom.”
- Practice the “law of dogtraction” with focused, constructive thoughts. Concentrate on the positive, no matter how small or inconsequential.
- Get enough sleep—without it, you’ll be unfocused, unproductive and unhealthy. Not to mention too tired to play with your loyal, four-legged friend!
- Run with the ball. When an opportunity comes along, gather enough information to make a decision and make a decision.
- Become a better listener by wagging your tail more than your tongue.
- Broadcast your own success by never speaking negatively about someone else’s.
- Shake off setbacks like a dog shakes off water. If you don’t fail, you don’t learn.
- Follow your own instincts. Other people’s opinions shouldn’t keep you from taking risks and pursuing your dreams.
- Step outside your digital bubble and make real-life connections.
- Assemble your pack. The most successful people are those who surround themselves with a network of colleagues, coaches, mentors and friends.
- Don’t just be grateful—show it. Appreciation is gratitude in action, and it makes everyone feel good.
- Don’t think of play as an escape from daily life, but rather an important part of learning and development. If you don’t play, you don’t grow.
- Seize the opportunities that are under your nose right now, instead of digging around in the past or sniffing at the future.
- Savor life with all your senses. Slow down and tune in to the wonderful world around you.
Excerpted from Secrets of a Working Dog: Unleash Your Potential and Create Success by Bella The Boxer with Ellen Galvin and Patrick Galvin