Reach Self-Actualization – Think Like a Dog

Maslow (Getty Images)

I have always argued that more people should journal; language expressed in writ keeps civilization grounded. You want to know what was going on 200 years ago? Yeah, you could dig out an old newspaper clipping and see what it had to say. You’d likely learn of killings and robberies that happened a couple centuries ago the same as now – same stories, different time. No, speaking of ‘journaling,’ I’m not talking about more people working for the local newspaper, although it would be interesting seeing that many people hungry for a story. I’m talking about more people sitting down at the table before bed and penning out their thoughts and activities for that day. What made them happy; what challenges did they meet; who did they visit; what did they read; what did they think about the day’s current events? Pick up GGG grandpa’s journal from 200 years ago and read what he had to say about those things and you get true, intriguing history. You find out about grandpa, but you also get a taste of the cultural underpinnings of his day.

Check back often to this site and read first-hand my own journalings – the window on my existence. As the big papers proclaim, “You read it here, first!” Everyone wants to be first and best and most profound. I am a professional writer; at work they call me the ‘managing editor.’ I spent just over two years earning a master’s degree in International Relations so I could write and publish an eight- to ten-page analysis of global issues that may affect the corporation where I work and its workers throughout the world. Don’t look for my publication in print; it’s proprietary. The only reason I bring it up is to add credibility to my journaling. I see a lot; I know a lot; I write a lot. And most of all, I’m a student of the business. That means I keep my mind sharp by always learning, always seeking to know, always searching for understanding, and then I write that shiz down! Perhaps we can mutually benefit one another in our quest for truth and enlightenment by comparing notes.

Last night, I laid awake longer than usual. Typically, I’m out like a light. Not last night. I stared into the black abyss and wondered how long Donald J. Trump and his cult would carry out their childish, destructive antics undermining the U.S. electoral process. Trump’s personal lawyer and pitch-man, Rudy Giuliani, is a study in human depravity clamoring for wealth. He’s the U.S. political poster child for all that’s gone haywire over the past century or so. People are watching. Our U.S. family’s dirty laundry is out there for all to see. I for one, am embarrassed. We no longer have the moral high ground regarding the democratic process. We are no longer the cool guy on the block, leading the way, teaching, enlightening, blazing trails – that beacon on the hill. We’re just like everyone else now.

I got up this morning and showered in the hottest water I could stand. You want to forget about your worries? Take a steaming hot shower, or even better, soak your whole body in hot water. You’ll walk out a new person; your problems literally melted into the background. Next, I walked the dog. That put the final touches on forgetting my Trump concerns. Take note what a dog’s concerns are and follow suit! My Golden-Doodle, as she’s called, has three primary worries – sleeping, eating, and walking the neighborhood. That’s her life. Doing all three in the same day catapults her to the highest level on Maslow’s hierarchy. Self-actualization for a dog is a straight line from bed to her morning walk. I should, perhaps, take a page from my dog and view life through her lens of understanding.        

Published by Jeff Hicks

I am a podcaster and author working and living in the Western United States.

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