#4 Mindful movement.
This blog is the forth in a series of relaxation techniques that Canine Comprehension teach to students. To be able to do this at home you need to make sure your dog can hold a close drop and will relax while being brushed.
The purpose of this exercise is to focus on a small exercise and enjoy the detail of the simple task rather than rushing from task to task. Rather than rushing our tasks and wanting to finish an everyday task in order to get on with doing something else, we will take that regular routine and fully experience it in detail.
For example: if you are cleaning up your room think about every detail of this task. As you pick things up off the floor take a moment to appreciate the movement of bending down, taking your item in your hand and putting it in it's rightful place. As you fold your clothes and put them away, appreciate the texture of the fabric, the neat look as they go away into your closet. Once you have a tidy room, smile, take a deep breath and smile. Take a moment to appreciate how nice it feels to have everything in its rightful place.
We are going to do this today by brushing the dog. Think about every movement you make. Take the brush and start at the dogs head, watch their reaction. Sweep the brush in long strokes down the dogs back. Watch your hand, the hair and the bristles of the brush while you are doing this. Place your hand gently on the dog’s foot and brush their legs. Think about how the fur moves differently on their legs than on their back.
I’m going to let you brush the dog how you wish. Concentrate on the action, stay in the moment and feel yourself start to relax and let the everyday worries drift away as you are lost in the moment. Instead of labouring through and constantly thinking about finishing the task, become aware of every step and fully immerse yourself in the progress. Take the activity beyond a routine by aligning yourself with it physically, mentally and spiritually. Who knows, you might even enjoy the cleaning for once!
Release the dog by saying ‘free’ in a happy voice and give them a pat.
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