Thrown from a Moving Train?
My mother frequently regaled her five kids with Worst Case Scenarios. Dinner conversations included questions like “what do you do if you’re thrown from a moving train?”, “how do you get out of a drowning car?”, and “what do you do if you’re attacked by a shark?”. It was up to us to figure out how to escape bad situations.
Playing “Worst Case Scenario” was a diversion and good entertainment. It took years for me to realize that Mom was gifting us with a way to solve problems and overcome disabling fears. I call it the “Worst Case Scenario Methodology”.
The method is simple:
- Identify the problem
- Plan a course of action
- Prepare and/or practice
The following example demonstrates a real life fear that was conquered using the “Worst Case Scenario Methodology” (do I dare call it the WCSM?). This is not a doggie example so please bear with me!
“Mom, I don’t want to go to Kindergarten, I’m scared.” “What’s your Worst Case Scenario? What’s the worst that can happen?” “I won’t make any friends!” BAM, you’ve taken the first and biggest step: identifying the problem! (Surprisingly, the biggest hurdle really is pinpointing the threat, figuring out what is really scaring you.) Ok, what can we do about it? How about we meet some of the other kindergarteners before classes begin? There, step #2 is done! Now we just have to find some of your future classmates and setup play dates (step #3). Meet a few times, have some fun together. Sure enough, the first day of Kindergarten wasn’t so scary.
Dog Trip Fears
When it comes to traveling with two big dogs, I have plenty of Worst Case Scenarios playing in my head.
What if a dog gets lost or hurt?
What if a loose dog comes too close and my reactive dog gets out of control?
I’m single and the sole pack leader. What if we’re far from home and it’s super hot and I can’t leave them in the car but I really need to (pee, eat, shop, register for lodging, etc)?
Will my dogs get enough exercise on the road when they have to be leashed and I can’t run as fast as they want to go?
What about snakes, ticks, and all those other strange creatures we’re not used to?
The list goes on.
I enjoy taking road trips with my dogs. Watching them as curious and delighted creatures in the world warms my heart and encourages me to live in the moment. It is my intention to use the Worst Case Scenario Methodology (WCSM) to conquer each of my dog trip fears so we can venture out and explore as a healthy, happy pack.