March 1, 2011 – We went to see Cesar Millan, the Dog Whisperer, last week at the Bergen PAC. The Dog Whisperer live onstage? Yes, you read correctly. Cesar is taking his dog rehabilitating, human training message on the road. According to Cesar, the key to understanding dog psychology, and responsibly raising a dog, is to recognize the main difference between the way humans and dogs experience the world: Humans, in our natural state, rationalize and create stories by which we live our lives; Dogs, in their natural state, experience reality without the back stories humans create. For more on Cesar’s philosophy you can read his book, watch his show and surf his website.
For our purposes though, let’s focus on the statement that we humans live the stories we create in our minds. We do this all the time. We interpret events in our lives in ways which suit us and conform to our beliefs. All the time. That is the way we live, through our minds and rationalizations. So when events in our lives fail to make us happy, what options do we have? Some folks simply shrug their shoulders and resign themselves to the facts they accept as true, chief among them that they cannot change things. Other folks take a different approach, recognizing that the source of our stories is not in the events which occur in our lives; but rather in our minds, i.e., in our thoughts. These folks simply choose to live in the natural human state by thinking different thoughts. True, we cannot change events that happened. We can however change our interpretations of those events. We can change the story. We can create the legend. We can and we do. All the time.
That being the case, why not create a legend which conforms to our beliefs about ourselves and our lives? Why not create a legend which allows for a broader perspective of what might be, of what we want to be? Why not create a story to live by which empowers us to achieve more greatness? We have the power. Now all we have to do is exercise that power. Every day.
As the newspaper editor said to Ransom Stoddard (James Stewart’s character) in The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance, “When the legend becomes fact, print the legend.” Legends inspire. Our stories become our legends, so let’s choose stories which inspire us towards greatness.
Long live the story.
Consider the possibilities.
Adam J. Krim www.driveconsulting.net