Today’s blog post is about dog training, but about much more than that. I’ve been a fan of the dog trainer Eric Letendre for several years, reading his books, watching his videos, and eagerly reading his daily emails about the subject. (If you’re curious, check out his book The Amazing Dog Training Man’s Ultimate Guide to Dogs or his website or YouTube channel.)
His email from a few days ago rang true as good advice not just for dog training, but for relationships in general, so I want to share it with you. The email recalls a chapter in his book where he wrote about “how the relationship is like a checking account. Every time you do something positive with your dog, you are making a deposit into the account. Every time you do something negative to your dog, you are making a withdrawal. In order for the relationship to stay positive, happy and healthy, you have to be making more deposits into the account. Too many withdrawals without enough deposits will result in a relationship that will go negative.”
Beyond the relationship you have with your pets, think about the relationships you have with key people in your life – spouse, family members, coworkers, neighbors, friends, acquaintances. Think about the best of those relationships. Aren’t they the ones where there is more thought to giving than taking? Don’t you get tired of being around people who always want something from you, but never give in return? Don’t you want to free yourself from being around those who inject nothing but negativity into your life? Don’t you want to be with those who give and who are positive? I do.
If a relationship with someone has soured in your life, try to analyze it from the deposit/withdrawal perspective. If you are making more positive deposits in the lives of others, chances are good they will not think twice about the occasional withdrawal you need to make. But be careful about always being the one to withdraw, or you may just find others wanting to withdraw from the relationship.
Make more deposits than withdrawals, and as the image above says, know when to close the account.