People in my Life,; AKA Train the Dog Your're Training

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Training Dogs in Victoria, BC

People in my life:

I have many different types of people in my life. My dearest friends are black and white, tell it as it is, call me on my nonsense and in turn expect to be called on their own, and are honest to themselves, and all around them. 

One of my other friends is very sensitive. I must be careful how I say things to her, as she can take them very personally, and take much deeper meaning from spoken words than was ever intended. She needs to hear about all the things that she does right, which are many. And her criticisms need to be gently laid out.

I have others that I must be very firm with my boundaries. I can enjoy them very much, but must be cautious of my limitations and rules. There is one other that will often twist words into something that wasn't said. She means well, but will hear what she wants, not what was said. For her my words and meaning must be very concise. 

I have others in my life that I refuse to bend for. I find they take lots of energy from me, and are draining, and just demand more and more from me. I

I treat all of the people in my life differently. Some I am strict for, protect my boundaries, and probably say 'no' more than I say 'yes'. Others I am open, vulnerable and honest for and would do anything for. And for others I am guarded and reserved and won't compromise. 

Training dogs is exactly the same. In fact, reread all of the above, and switch the word 'people' for 'dogs' and then you know how I train dogs. 

Training dogs isn't about leadership. It isn't about never saying 'no'. It isn't about rewards, coaching, or taking control. 

While it is sometimes all of those things, or none of those things, as a whole it is so much more. It is a dynamic relationship and communication shared between two individuals. 

It must bend and flow depending upon the dynamic of those two individuals. If one is pushy, demanding, and doesn't take 'no' for an answer, you will probably find me very strict, concise, and clear in my feedback. Whereas if I am with someone who is overly critical and takes all feedback as a negative, they will get built up, told about all that they do right, how clever they are, and will leave feeling good about themselves. 

Train the dog that you are training. Learn what their personality is like, and then be that person for them as you train them their exercises. 

Monique Anstee 
Victoria, BC

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