The Ripples from Empowered Choices

Exciting news to share! I was invited to be on a podcast for Sol Health Yoga earlier this week to share about the offering I’ll be hosting there in January. (I’ll share the episode when its released).

The episode was a chance for me to share my reflections about how I moved into this space of integrating BodyMind Connection within the dog training/behavior space and beyond.

I’ll share some of the insights for you here.

Back in the day, Jack had some serious concerns like separation anxiety and barking and lunging at anything and everything and I needed a real and compassionate way to support him since we didn’t have any luck initially in finding a professional that shared my values.

Instead, I took the plunge and invested in myself in becoming a certified dog trainer

But, I quickly learned, this only got me so far. I needed more continuing education.

I was introduced to the Do No Harm Dog Training FB group from a mentor and as I lurked and learned about how to meet a dog’s needs, I realized how foundational this understanding is in any behavior change plan. I then became a moderator for this group in 2020.

It wasn’t until I was asked to do copy editing of the Do No No Harm Dog Training and Behavior Handbook that I became immersed in the content and passages where it discussed the emotional needs of our dogs.

My take away was how trust was vital and without it, nothing is possible.

A dog has to feel a connection with its person in order for the dog to “do the things” the person wanted. To take it a step further, a person has to feel a connection with their dog if their dog is going to feel calm, safe and relaxed.

It finally clicked for me and I can “see” how emotions drive behavior.

When I started observing Jack from the lens of what is his body experiences in those moments of calm and contrasted within those moments of frenzied barking and lunging, I connected with him in a way where it opened the door for me to have self reflection on what am I feeling?

What am I feeling when Jack is experiencing peace and calm and frantic barking and lunging at other dogs that pass by?

I recognized the symbiotic connection we have with one another and I also recognized where I lacked understanding of myself.

I reached out to a friend who is a BodyMind Coach and I shared how I wanted greater understanding of how my feelings drive my own behavior and to relearn to trust my inner knowing in how I show up in my life and within the relationships I care for which includes Jack and Bernie.

This started my journey of unraveling old patterns and beliefs and creating a newer version of myself which is more aligned with where I’m going.

As I wrapped up the coaching container with my own coach, my eyes opened in seeing the pain of those I was serving in their own struggle. I saw how the challenges they faced impacted not only the life with their dogs, but how the struggle with their dogs was a reflection of what was going on in other parts of their lives.

They shared how they didn’t feel confident to handle x behavior problem their dog was experiencing. They cycled through self doubt and shame over and over again which led them into retreating back to the old way of doing things which only kept them in a cycle of behavior patterns that didn’t work in the first place.

The commonalities were astounding.

So, I embarked on furthering my knowledge and expertise. I invested into a 12 month coaching certification program where I not only became more attuned to myself, but I recognized the power of presence and how connection with others can bring about amazing awarenesses for those I serve.

The individuals and families shared with me profound takeaways of our time together.

One client shared that when she learned about how her dogs are just seeking ways for their needs to be met just like she is, she saw this was the path to success.

Another client shared with me in our coaching conversation about significant losses of loved ones in her life which also included her dogs of years ago. She described how the pain and sadness of these losses interfered with how she’s showing up for her dogs in the here and now.

By re discovering herself, she gained more confidence. She is empowered in how she shows up and advocates for herself and her dogs and by doing the inner work, she experiences more joy and freedom.

Another client shared with me in a recent coaching session that by reflecting on various pieces of her life, she recognizes that what is showing up with her and her dogs isn’t separate or happening outside of the other things in her life. What is happening with her and her dogs is interconnected with all the other things going on and how creating flow in one area brings ease into another.

At the heart of this is connection to self. Awareness of how one is feeling. Attuned to their inner knowing. Living their life by following what feels right for them to do and how they want to show up in this world.

You are not split into pieces when things don’t go the way you want in one area of your life. You are whole and feeling your completeness during times of uncertainty allows you to find your way back to home, your way back to yourself and your inner peace.

So many options to connect with yourself and creating your own empowered choices!

I invite you to explore the options that are right for you!

Creating Empowering Choices 90 min in person workshop.

Find out about 1:1 Coaching or sign up for the Community Connections Monthly Group Membership

Published by houndbiz

Katherine Porter is a force free, reward based dog behavior advisor and consultant serving clients and their companion dogs worldwide. Her calm and gentle approach in coaching clients in effectively communicating what they want to their dog blends her MSW background into her dog training and behavior practice. Katherine was a behavior consultant for Heeling Hounds after graduation. She opened Four Paws and You Dog Training LLC when the military relocated her family to Fort Sill, OK in 2015. During this time, she volunteered with Rainbow Bridge Can Wait where she provided post adoption consultations to new pet parents. She also developed and implemented tailored behavior modification plans for highly reactive dogs residing at the shelter. She also provided educational programs to military children through interactive workshops at the Fort Sill School Age Center. In 2017, Katherine relocated Four Paws and You Dog Training LLC to Germany. She served the Armed Forces communities in Bavaria. She continued coaching and advising her clients in addressing their companion dog’s fearful and reactive behavioral issues. Katherine takes a Do No Harm approach first and foremost in providing behavioral plans. She is committed in serving clients with gentle and modern science approaches in modifying behavioral concerns such as reactivity, aggression, separation anxiety and fear based responses. Katherine is a member of the Pet Professional Guild. She is focused on integrating a holistic and modern approach in addressing her client’s pet companion reactive behavior issues.

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