Monthly Archives: October 2015

Are You in the Autumn of Your Career?

Autumn LeavesI love autumn!  The cooler temperatures give me more energy and a hearty appetite.  The brightly colored leaves on the ground bring interesting new scents from afar.  They make a curious crunching sound when I walk through them.  The spring and summer vegetation is fading yet I see other plants thriving this time of year.

Human pups tumble playfully in the piles of leaves.  It looks like such fun!  I am amused by watching the squirrels frantically scurrying about gathering and hiding provisions for the cold months to come.  I am thankful[1] that my human team provides for all of my needs, yet I know that not all of my canine colleagues are so fortunate.[2]

I have observed that humans love autumn too.  Many say it is their favorite time of year.  I sense for many it is a nostalgic time for reflection and a season with many traditions.  My humans spend more time indoors, and the pace of daily life is just a bit more relaxed.  We enjoy a bit more quality time together watching men throw and kick balls on the electronic device with moving images.  The house is often full of tantalizing warm foods and spicy aromas.

I have heard the term “the autumn of your life.”  I think this can be both a positive or negative term.[3] Are you in the autumn of your career?  Perhaps you are contemplating a major change to your position, or you are taking on a senior role at your job.  Whatever the circumstances, make autumn the best season of your work life!

This may be a time when you can take on new challenges and risks.  The pace of your career may not burn as hotly as it once did, but you can still make an impact.  You can be like the foliage that is most brilliant in the cooler weather.  Bring boldly colored ideas to the table.  Add spice to the discussion.  Have fun!  While others are scurrying around like busy squirrels, your maturity and experience can bring perspective on the big picture and on what is really important.  This is a time for a new kind of boldness – the boldness to be yourself!

How you spend the autumn of your career is up to you.  You can sit like a dried leaf, waiting to be raked up and composted.  Or you can take flight on the swirling wind and soar into a bold and colorful adventure!

Your best friend,

Harley

[1] More about thankfulness in November!

[2] Please support causes that give help find good homes for needy animals.  My pet charity is the Grosse Pointe Animal Adoption Society.

[3] I am nine human-years-old, which is 63 in dog years.  I guess I am also in the autumn of my life.  Does this make me a canine baby boomer?

A Dog’s Reflection on Pup Francis, Dog Lovers, and the Blessing of Genuine People

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Recently my humans were sitting and staying for long periods of time while they watched the electronic device with moving images.  I was curious about their behavior so I joined them.  They were watching a man in white clothing and I thought they referred to him as “Pup Francis”.  This confused me as I could see that he was not a pup; he was an older human.  My breed is naturally investigative, so I kept watching.  What I saw was a man who was kind and attentive to the many humans around him.  When he spoke, I sensed that not everyone agreed with what he was saying but they listened respectfully because his concern for others was sincere.  We dogs are excellent judges of character.  I immediately detected that the man genuinely loved people.  Although I did not see him with members of my species, I instinctively knew he was a dog lover too!

I can spot a dog lover a mile away.  As one approaches me, he talks softly while he gently extends his closed hand so that I can sniff and get comfortable.  Once we have established a rapport, he may give me a little rub under my chin or a dreamy scratch behind my ear.  He cares about my needs and this establishes a relationship of mutual respect and trust.  I can spot a phony too!  Telltale signs are the fake cooing and “good boy” as he inches toward me. He gives me an exaggerated pat on the head while looking around to confirm he has an audience for his canine benevolence.  Then, when no one is looking he picks dog hair off his clothes and hurries away to wash his hands.  Geez!!   Who is he kidding?

I am talking about the quality of being genuine.  Pup Francis radiates genuineness. Genuine people are always themselves. They do not look around to see who is watching.   They do not change their position in response to what is trending on social media.  They do not have to remember what they said five years ago.   The truth is not a moving target for genuine people.   Fact checkers:  knock yourselves out looking for contradictions!  You will come up empty.

Genuine people do not worry about building their “personal brand” because they are not selling anything.  Instead, they focus on building quality relationships with the living creatures around them and on working toward shared goals.  When you are genuine, people trust you.  They want to work with you.

It has been my observation that humans today deeply crave genuineness.  Chronic cynicism can eat away at one’s faith in mankind and hope for the future.  Perhaps that is why Pup Francis was so enthusiastically received, even by people who do not share his beliefs[1].

We dogs are naturally genuine creatures.  We are always true to ourselves.  I think this is the quality which bonds us to humans.  You can be genuine too.  You do not need to take special training or attend a fancy expensive webinar.  You were born with the innate ability to be true.  Just have the courage to be yourself.

By the way, I was right.  Pup Francis is a dog lover![2]

Your Best Friend,

Harley

 

[1] By way of analogy, my human team has many policies about what is best for my well-being.  I respect them because their concern for me is sincere, even though some rules  are, in my view outdated, such as not giving me tasty treats from their table.  I am very thankful that one family member does not follow this questionable policy, but this is a confidential matter.

[2] https://www.facebook.com/WhiteHouse/photos/a.158628314237.115142.63811549237/10153801035079238/