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By Sean O’Shea

When you lavish your dog with constant attention, praise, and affection, and you not only allow your dog to be constantly near you, but you reward and reinforce it, you’re very likely creating separation anxiety issues.

Our dogs can often become like drug addicts. They get used to an intensity and consistency of emotional interaction and physical closeness, and then when you’re not present they go through withdrawals of physical and emotions pain and discomfort.

Our dogs don’t know what’s being created, they just react to what feels good in the moment. In the same way they will eat ten pounds of food and need a vet visit, they will also take on all of the petting, the holding, the treating, the needing, the following, the longing and loving glances from you – simply because it feels good in the moment – and they will put themselves in harm’s way simply because they don’t know any better.

Because our dogs are unable to understand the gravity of what’s happening, the responsibility for striking that balance and creating a healthy environment and relationship falls on you. Your job is to do what’s right for your dog, even if that sometimes means denying yourself what feels good for you in the moment.

Just as you advocate and ensure that your dog doesn’t run into the street, doesn’t play with dogs that are dangerous or unbalanced, doesn’t eat toxic plants or food, doesn’t become dehydrated from lack of water, and doesn’t sit in a car that is too hot and dangerous on a sunny day, you also need to ensure and advocate for him that he doesn’t become emotionally and physically unhealthy due to too much love, too much affection, and too much of you.

What feels good and rewarding to you just might be hurting your dog.

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The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837

Our groundbreaking do-it-yourself training video/PDF training booklet Learn to Train The Good Dog Way: The Foundation is now available for pre-order at a discounted price – click on the picture below to watch the new TEASER video, and click HERE to order your copy!

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By Sean O’Shea

Oftentimes I see dog owners allowing tons of monkey business to ensue on walks – their dogs are pulling continuously on leash, darting here and there, marking this and that at their discretion, and all in all being disconnected, disrespectful, and stressed out – but then when their dog sees another dog and starts to freak out, the owner tries to address/correct their dog by vainly tugging on the leash, talking or yelling at them, and getting frustrated.

This is the “address the dynamite rather than the fuse syndrome” and, as you can imagine, trying to stop the explosion is way harder than trying to put out the fuse. :) This isn’t how you want to go about getting rid of reactivity issues on the walk!

The trick to fixing this stuff is actually simple: it’s all about setting the proper tone and state of mind before you encounter the target or trigger, not once you’re in the heat of battle.

Dogs who are allowed to pull you through thresholds, pull on leash, veer to trees and grass to pee and sniff when they choose and, in general, disregard their owner, are being taught that they are in charge. This creates stressed-out, fearful/anxious and/or entitled/empowered nervous wrecks who feel unsafe and overburdened with the responsibility to figure their world out.

Not a fun place to be for your dog.

And this is where dog reactivity on-leash comes from: Frustration or fear (and sometimes a combo of both!) from a lack of believable guidance.

Dogs with believable leaders, enforced rules, and structure are confident, relaxed, and comfortable dogs. And dogs who are confident, relaxed, and comfortable aren’t stressed and reactive! :)

So let’s have a look at a few very simple steps to change the dynamic of stressed and reactive into one of calm and cool.

Here’s your no monkey-business/reactivity/stress/anxiety prescription:

1) Dog waits patiently at thresholds (with zero pulling) for permission to move through. (Watch my “Thresholds” video HERE.)

2) Keep the leash short but not tight, always leaving a small amount of play. The short leash helps you keep your dog out of trouble AND allows you to know the instant he becomes disconnected. (Watch my “Walk” video HERE.)

3) Oftentimes a firmer conversation/correction for bad behavior/poor choices at the top of the walk will set the tone for a much more respectful and deferential walk. Setting the tone with a firmer consequence for a smaller infraction can be counter-intuitive but highly effective.

4) Never use constant pressure to hold your dog back from pulling. Instead you use corrective leash pops with instant release to give your dog information and allow him to be responsible to hold himself in position. Let your dog tell you the right level of leash pop needed. If you pop at a level two and the behavior persists, you’re likely using too mild of a correction, so try a level four. Again, let your dog tell you what works.

5) If leash pops aren’t breaking through and your dog is continuing to be intense and pulling, brisk 180′s when your dog gets out in front of you (walking the opposite direction while holding the leash firmly to your chest with two hands) can be a very helpful conversation. Always only use as much pressure as needed. Helpful video HERE!

6) Never allow pulling to trees/grass/flowers etc for marking. Instead you release your dog to pee and sniff when you decide. It makes no sense to your dog if you allow him to pull and disregard you 90% of the time, and then expect him to listen during the 10% when it matters to you most.

7) Manage and cultivate a healthy/positive state of mind by using the leash pops to address/correct your dog at the split second he begins to escalate or become excited when he sees or hears a dog. Do not wait for the explosion – correct your dog when they are at a 1, 2, or 3 and you will never see a 7, 8, 9, or 10!

8) Use space as a buffer with oncoming dogs. Don’t put your dog into “the pressure cooker” with another dog. The closer your dog gets to another dog the more the pressure increases. If your dog is nervous – like most reactive dogs are – the closer you get the less safe he feels. If your dog is bratty and excited, the closer you get, the more his frustration/excitement increases. In either case the less the space the harder it is for you and your dog to be successful. (Note: Super naughty, spazzy, bratty, reactive dogs coming towards you need more space than sedate and relaxed dogs do.

9) Focus on creating polite, courteous, and relaxed behavior at all times, and this will become your dog’s default state.

Remember, if you will proactively create a relaxed, respectful, and stress-free state of mind before the bombs start falling you’ll have a very good chance of avoiding the explosions of reactivity altogether. :)
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Click Here to learn more about Sean.

The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837

Our groundbreaking do-it-yourself training video/PDF training booklet Learn to Train The Good Dog Way: The Foundation is now available for pre-order at a discounted price – click on the picture below to watch the new TEASER video, and click HERE to order your copy!

 

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By Sean O’Shea from The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation

While I’m a big proponent of using and leveraging the very best tools available for you and your dog to be successful, the reality is that the greatest tools in the world mean nothing if your head, heart, and energy aren’t in the right place.

The greatest tool you have at your disposal is always yourself. Your mind and your intention. If your emotions and outlook regarding your dog (and yourself) are out of balance, you will both likely struggle, regardless of what tools you use.

If you have an out of balance dog and you’re: still babying and spoiling because it feels good/fulfills your need to nurture, feeling guilty for working long hours so you only share freedom and affection when you get home, shunning structure, training and discipline because it feels yucky or un-enjoyable, being too soft with a firm dog because that’s simply who you are, substituting dog relationships and connection for human relationships and connection, or using your dog to fill unattended to emotional voids and needs, you and your dog will likely still struggle.

The way you feel about yourself and the world, and the way you think about your dog and his training and lifestyle is what fuels the tools and your training strategy to either be powerful and transformative, or to be superficial, unconvincing, and powerless.

Whether you’re aware of it or not, your human animal is having a constant, 24/7 conversation with your canine animal about who you are and what role you wish to play in his life. You cannot tell your dog 23 hours of the day that he’s your little cuddle bug and that you’re his doting mommy or daddy and then on your walks where he misbehaves and acts likes a monster try to tell him you are the big pack leader. :) That ones not going to work. We have to give our dogs more credit than that.

Every moment is valuable. You build credit towards good behavior by creating believable leadership long before you’re going to need it when the chips are down. If you want to turn behavior issues around and get your dog into an awesome space state of mind wise, you have to cultivate a believable energy, and a believable presence your dog is able to buy into and follow as an ongoing lifestyle – not just in the moments you need it or that are convenient.

These awesome creatures have a special knack for highlighting and exposing our personal gaps, camouflaged shortcomings, and internal struggles. How awesome is that? You live with your very own personal therapist. :) That’s the awesome challenge and opportunity of dogs: you can’t fool them with tools or a momentary decision of commitment or fortitude, no, they’re looking and waiting for the real stuff. Your best stuff. If you want them to change they’re ready for it – just as soon as you are ready to change yourself.

So remember, the tools are important, no doubt, but it’s your presence, your intention, your emotional balance, your energy, your decision to treat and view your dog like a dog, your force of will and desire and determination, and the constant conversation that your human animal is having with your canine animal that fuels and empowers the tools and the training strategy to actually create the possibility for transformation and change.

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CONNECT WITH US ON FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube for more training insights, tips, a free weekly Q&A, and community interaction!

The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837

Our groundbreaking do-it-yourself training video/PDF training booklet Learn to Train The Good Dog Way: The Foundation is now available for pre-order at a discounted price – click on the picture below to watch the new TEASER video, and click HERE to order your copy!

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By Sean O’Shea

Hey guys, I often get asked about introducing new dogs to your house/pack. There are many approaches to create initial introductions (walking together for example), but I wanted to share my best secrets for creating long-term, full comfort when new dogs are freely interacting and living together.

What are those secrets? Ready for it? Time, structure, and leadership. (I know, I know, you we’re probably hoping for something more exotic, but this stuff is simple. :))

Dogs want and need to know a few things so they can be comfortable. They want to know what the other dog is about. Does she mean me harm? Is he someone I can trust? Am I safe? Do you belong here? What’s your story? Are we going to be friends or enemies?

It’s your job as their leader to create the environment and the state of mind, throughout your pack, which will allow positive, tension-free relationships to flourish.

Most of the issues I see that go down with new dogs being introduced to each other in the home are totally avoidable and stem from dogs being let loose far too quickly, in a chaotic, stressed, nervous, and excited state to figure things out on their own. Dogs in these states are ripe for the fighting and bad-choice-making. And here’s the thing, once dogs have had a serious squabble you’ve got a very good chance of a grudge and long-term distrust being created. That means lots of trouble and tons of work to even attempt to resolve it and create harmony again.

So instead of chaos, here’s what I recommend:

-Don’t be in a rush. Take as much time as needed. This could be two days, two weeks, or two months. It all depends on the dogs. But I want to make sure you understand the time parameters I’m suggesting as possibilities.

-Teach all dogs in the pack the basics: Walk politely on leash, be polite at thresholds, wait calmly for food, have a rock solid “place” command, be polite around humans and their space.

-Get ALL dogs (not just the new guy!) used to being consistently in a good, relaxed, obedient state. Crazy, disobedient, “out of their tree” dogs are just asking for fights with the wrong dog.

-Be aware of whether you have a resource guarder in your midst. This can be guarding you, guarding food, guarding toys, guarding space etc. If you have one of these guys, you will have to be hyper-conscious about removing points of competition and contention, and may have some heavy-duty management in your future. (I recommend working on the guarder and your relationship to remove as much of this as possible.)

-Have dogs learn to simply exist around each other. Being in “place” is a great way for dogs to very comfortably get used to each other’s presence without the pressure of having to make decisions about each other. (Decisions = stress. Stress = bad choices.) Consider mutual “place” commands as a low-impact meet and greet. You can slowly add more movement with one dog at a time and gauge the reactions to see your progress.

-Be patient! And when you think you’ve been patient, be patient some more. :) You’re going to have these dogs for a long time, there’s no rush to create magic instantly.

-Be aware of if you have a nervous, insecure, or just plain scrapper in your midst. These guys need way more time than the average dog to relax and trust. Add a few more of my “be patient” reminders to your list. (Note: some dogs with serious fighting issues might not be safe around other dogs even after a protracted introductory period. If you’re unsure get a pro involved to help you assess.)

-Keep excitement, affection, and chaos to a minimum during the initial period. All of these things can create stress, competition, tension, and fights.

-Use crates to ensure all dogs are safe when unsupervised. Do not leave dogs alone together who are new to each other. Many things in the home can trigger excitement, stress, competition, and ultimately fights (doorbells, delivery people, squirrels etc) even in your absence.

-Use crates to have dogs simply get comfy around each other. You can crate dogs near each other and help remove novelty, uncertainty and concern. But you have to ensure that that all dogs in the crates are practicing awesome behavior. If one or more of the dogs are stressed, barking, whining, carrying on, trying to escape, panicky, demanding or bratty, then you’ve got a recipe for disaster brewing. (Imagine living next to the worst neighbor in the world and how stressed, angry, and unhappy that makes you feel. Same goes for your dogs.) If you can’t ensure great behavior, crate in different rooms.

-Walk the dogs together. They don’t need to be right next to each other to benefit from the walk together. As they show more comfort in each other’s presence you can slowly close the distance.

-Don’t feed new dogs close to each other. Food, like affection creates competition and stress, and by now we know what that leads to :)

-Be careful with play and toys. As you get more comfortable, remember that dogs who are cool with each other in one context and environment can lose their cool when excitement and competition (toys and play) are introduced. Watch for tension and serious intent and address/diffuse it quickly.

-Here’s the big Kahuna: Dogs are constantly assessing each other and you. If one of the dogs (doesn’t matter if it’s the new dog or your long-time dog) sees the other dog or dogs misbehaving, being bratty, out of control, pulling on leash, barking/being reactive at other dogs on the walk, demanding attention from you, guarding space or objects, barking in the house incessantly, able to push into your personal space, and that you the human do not have control of and over him, you have another recipe for disaster brewing. Just like you see a dog that is out of control and say “good grief, what an annoying, out of control, dangerous, pushy, little so and so” so do the dogs in your life. If you won’t create and demand polite, respectful, comfortable, courteous behavior, then you can be almost guaranteed that one of your dogs will. Take control, create a respectful, calm, and polite environment and all the dogs will feel more comfortable and they will thank you with nice, non-fighting behavior.

Ok, so it sounds like a giant pain in the butt that’s going to take forever, but it’s not really that bad. It’s a little pain, and it does take a little time, but it’s so worth the pay-off of long term comfort and safety with your dogs. Of course there are many dogs that you could throw all this out the window, you could turn them loose instantly and have zero issues…forever! But unfortunately I get all the calls for the dogs where it didn’t work out that way. :)

If you know you’ve got a dog that isn’t perfect and has some issues, follow these recommendations very closely, be super patient and prepared for a longer haul. Watch the dogs to see how the comfort level looks, and then you can assess where to move from there. If you have an easy dog and you’re bringing a new dog in, use these recommendations as well, and watch your dogs. They will tell you (absence of tension, staring, side-eyeing, growling etc) when they feel comfortable and ready for more freedom and interaction.

Just remember, it’s so much easier and takes far less time (and money!!) to create a great relationship with new dogs from the get-go than it does to try to undo nasty tension and animosity down the line. :)

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The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837

Our groundbreaking do-it-yourself training video/PDF training booklet Learn to Train The Good Dog Way: The Foundation is now available for pre-order at a discounted price – click HERE to order your copy!

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By Sean O’Shea

When you start working on dog training or changing behavior issues with your dog, you gotta remember it’s a process…for both of you.

You’ve both got bad habits that are likely deeply ingrained – they need time to be addressed and replaced.

You’re both learning new skills/mechanics – they need time to develop and be mastered.

You both have emotional associations/triggers that cause you to feel a certain way in certain situations – these need time to be addressed and desensitized.

You’re both learning new ways of thinking and feeling about each other – you both need time for this process to crystallize.

You’re both unsure about the changes to your normal lifestyle/world – you both need time to adjust and become comfortable.

Change is hard for all of us. Attempting to reverse negative habits, learn new techniques/commands/behaviors, think differently, address and desensitize fear and anxiety (in both species!), and create new thoughts and feelings about each other takes much practice, care, and time.

It will likely be bumpy. It will likely be hard. You will likely go backwards. You will likely feel hopeless. You will likely feel silly. You will likely feel overwhelmed. You will likely lose your cool. You will have great victories and challenging defeats. But if you keep on trying, keep on pushing, you will get there!

So please remember to give you and your dog the time and space to develop, to learn, to become the new and better versions of yourselves. This especially applies in the beginning, when all of the habits, fear, worry, lack of coordination, and uncertainty are at their strongest.

You’re both learning and growing and becoming better – enjoy the process. :)

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CONNECT WITH US ON Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube for more training insights, tips, a free weekly Q&A, and community interaction!

Click Here to visit our website.
The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837
Our groundbreaking do-it-yourself training video/PDF training booklet Learn to Train The Good Dog Way: The Foundation is now available for pre-order at a discounted price – click HERE to order your copy!

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To learn more about us visit our website at The Good Dog

The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837

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By Sean O’Shea

I often get asked by clients and other folks why I recommend the “Heel” command and what is the value of it? It’s a very good question. For me, it goes much, much deeper than just the aesthetic of having a dog walk next to you (although it does look good! :)), and there’s some obvious practical value of having a dog in a well managed physical position, close to your side to keep him or her out of trouble and harm’s way. But in my opinion that’s just the tip of the iceberg. There are some really valuable state of mind and relationship benefits as well. Let’s take a look at a few!

-Dogs have to utilize a ton of impulse control and focus to keep themselves next to you on the walk in the face of many distractions and exciting triggers. This ends up being a fantastic training and state of mind exercise for the dog.

-The physical position of the dog indicates the mental position as well – or in other words, if the dog is working to keep himself next to me, I know he’s focused on me instead of the environment, I know he’s managing himself, and I also know that his intensity level is under control. (Most dogs as soon as they get agitated or stimulated start to move around and lose position either farther back or forward, and these are great warning signs.)

-A respectful, polite, courteous, and tuned-in state of mind isn’t the state of mind that reacts to dogs and other things in the environment.

-Having your dog honor your request to walk in a certain position, at a certain pace, and ignoring distractions, is a huge positive relationship builder.

-Dogs who are paying attention, respectful, polite, and courteously walking in a heel feel far less inspired, entitled, and empowered to bark, lunge, and disagree with things they disapprove of in their environment.

-Dogs in a heel, that are practicing self-control are far less stressed and anxious, and therefore far less apt to make poor decisions around dogs, people, cars, bikes etc.

-Dogs in a heel are actually deeply connected to their owners. They therefore feel far less stress and anxiety because they are being guided/led through the world rather than being in charge of assessing and sorting out what is safe and what is dangerous constantly. (Especially important for nervous, anxious, fearful dogs, who make up the majority of reactive cases.)

-Asking more of your dog makes you a leader. A dog with a leader is relaxed and comfortable. A dog who is a leader is stressed and anxious.

-Dogs being respectful on-leash tend to be respectful to the environment. Dogs being brats on-leash tend to be brats to the environment.

-If the dog is using 75% of their mental focus on keeping themselves in a heel position! that only leaves 25% to get into trouble with.

If you haven’t worked on “Heel” with your dog yet, and you’d like to benefit from some of these juicy “Heel/Healing” results, drop me a comment and I’ll connect you with a link to my video that shows how easy it is to create this very cool command. :)

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Here are a few links of mine to help you with healing your heeling!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6nxKaTYQFJI

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OTiKVc4ZZWo

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rrrQJto8xJU

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CONNECT WITH US ON FacebookTwitterInstagramYouTube for more training insights, tips, a free weekly Q&A, and community interaction!

Click Here to visit our website.
The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837

Our groundbreaking do-it-yourself training video/PDF training booklet Learn to Train The Good Dog Way: The Foundation is now available for pre-order at a discounted price – click on the picture below to watch the new TEASER video, and click HERE to order your copy!

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By Sean O’Shea

Hey guys and gals, this is a special collection from our Train The Trainers seminar series that focuses on personal development. I’ve put together what I’ve found to be the most important and transformative principles. There are of course many, many more, but these seem to be the foundation for everything. I’ve dedicated years to the study of life improvement and have attempted to distill all that info down to the most important and easy to follow principles.

A few of the biggest issues with personal development work are typically that there is too much stuff, it’s overwhelming, and “where would I start?” Another issue is trust. As in any field there are bound to be those who operate from integrity and those that don’t. I worked tirelessly to find people (authors and speakers) who after searching through tons of their work still held up as solid people with solid integrity. I pulled this info from what I found to be the best of the best.

These laws in and of themselves won’t change your life, but if you use them as guide on your journey to consistent study, care, and attention to improving your internal skills, they absolutely can. What I would suggest is that you simply use these as a reminder of the fundamentals of living the great life. Commit daily to at least 30 minutes, or even better, an hour of studying transformational information, and like clockwork, the amazing concepts start to become a part of you. And then your life starts to reflect that all back to you with better relationships, opportunities, happiness, finances etc. Remember, your outside world is simply a reflection of your inside world. We become what we expose ourselves to. Expose ourselves to great stuff and we become, well, great stuff! :)

Change what you think and believe, and that will change your actions, and that will change your results, and that will change your reality. It all starts with your mind. :)

The 10 Principles
By Sean O’Shea

1) 100% Responsibility

You have to stop all blaming, all whining, all complaining. You have to honestly accept that the only thing responsible for your state of mind, results, and ultimately what happens in your life, is you. That everything you have at the moment, you’ve created through your thoughts and actions. Negative people? You let them in. Unhealthy relationships? You let them in. Financial trouble, you allowed it to happen through action or non-action. Unfulfilled or not where you wan to be in life? It’s not the world’s fault, it’s yours. But that’s the great news – if you’re responsible for creating the crap (meaning, it wasn’t just dumb luck or circumstance, it was you’re doing), you can also create the great! Once you make this shift, you take back 100% control of your life – you are liberated from circumstances. This single shift changes the entire dynamic/power of your life. When we blame others we are powerless victims, when we take responsibility we are powerful creators. If you look closely you’ll realize that there’s always one person at the scene of the crime in your life – and that’s you! :)

Action Step: Challenge yourself to become aware of your blaming vs responsibility habits in very moment.

2) Influence

Nothing impacts your beliefs, habits, thoughts, actions, goals, dreams, relationships, and finances more than the people, the books, the TV, the radio, and the movies that you expose yourself to. If you truly want to be successful, happy, healthy, and fulfilled, you have to remove the toxic/negative/lack influences of all of the above and replace them with positive, healthy, successful, happy, growing, and improving people and content. Remember, we become what we expose ourselves to repeatedly.

Action Step: Become aware of all of the negative influences you expose yourself to on a daily basis through tv, fb, internet, magazines, friends, family, movies, and actually FEEL what they make you FEEL when exposed to them. Become sensitive the feeling of the negativity, and use it as guide to steer you towards healthier influences.

Bonus Action Step!: Start systematically removing negative influences and replacing them with positive ones. Nothing gives you permission to be stuck and toxic like other stuck and toxic people. Remove them.

3) Habits

What we do repeatedly is what we become. You don’t’ create your future, you create your habits, and they create your future. In many ways, success and failure are very simple: practice world-class habits consistently, and you end up with a world-class life. Practice substandard habits, and you end up with a substandard life. Success and failure aren’t created with earth-shattering breakthroughs or cataclysmic mistakes – success and failure are determined by hundreds of tiny, seemingly inconsequential choices and actions you make and take every day. You either move incrementally towards success, or incrementally towards failure – there is no neutral. Master your habits, and you master your life – let your habits get away from you, and life will master you.

Action Step: Become acutely aware of your little habits and routines and what they’re leading you towards. Remember, habits stack! One bad choice makes the next bad choice easy and the next good choice hard. One good choice makes the next good choice easy and the next bad choice hard.

Bonus Action Step!: Read The Slight Edge by Jeff Olson.

4) Mindset

A positive mindset attracts positive people and opportunities. A truly positive/healthy person (and the opportunities they can offer) will only be attracted to and want to work/associate with someone who is also positive/healthy. A negative/toxic attitude (complaining, whining, gossiping, integrity issues, character issues, narrow-mindedness, and victim mentality) will repel awesome folks and opportunities. Great people and great opportunities will gravitate towards equally great people – your job is to become someone that successful people and opportunities are attracted to. Few things are as powerful for opening doors and “magically” creating opportunities and “luck” like a great attitude and mindset.

Action Step: Become highly sensitive to both your attitude as well as others in every moment. How do you FEEL when you’re around negative people/mindsets? Do you want to spend more time with them or less? This is how others feel about you when you’re attitude is negative or toxic. Work to become someone that others feel lifted and joyful around and awesome people and opportunities will start to magically appear. This is how you become a magnet for success and happiness.

5) Prosperity Consciousness

How you feel about money will determine how much of it finds you. Ask yourself how you feel about this statement: I want as much happiness as I can get in my life. I want as much love as I can get in my life. I want as much money as I can get in my life. How do you feel about people who are rich? How do you feel about money and material things? Do you feel that what you have takes away from someone else? Are you aware of all the negative programming surrounding money and success? Have you been affected by your parents’ and society’s beliefs about money? How you feel about money, wealth, prosperity, and rich people will determine what you ultimately go after, and what you ultimately have. Money is neutral – it is neither good nor bad – it is simply a medium of exchange. Money magnifies what you already are: if you’re nasty, it will make you more nasty; if you’re generous and giving, it will make you more generous and giving. Prosperity is simply a value for value exchange – we get paid for bringing value to the marketplace. Wealth is created by adding value, solving problems and helping people.

Action Step: Start looking at money as the physical representation of value shared with others. See others with more money than you as people who have given/created more value than you have. (This one sticks in everyone’s craw! But it’s a great exercise!) View creating more money as a noble enterprise that simply signifies value you’ve created for others.

Bonus Action Step: Follow Randy Gage’s blog and books.

6) Goal Setting

If you want to be successful, you absolutely have to have goals, and they have to be written down. Clearly-defined goals pull you toward their successful completion – they have power and magnetism. They create emotional excitement and direction which motivates. This single step will massively differentiate you from the crowd, and will massively accelerate your success. Clearly-defined goals give your conscious and your subconscious mind a clear target/direction to aim for. Without this defined direction, your mind will dilute its focus, will be sidetracked often, and you will run the very real risk of ending up in a location not of your choosing and not of your liking. Your mind is simply a goal-seeking and goal achieving device – it is a super computer designed to help you achieve whatever it is you desire – your job is to furnish it with the information about what exactly it is that you want so it can get you there. Goal setting is probably the single greatest differentiator between successful people and those that struggle.

Action Step: Read Laura Morgan’s awesome post on goal setting: http://eatyourcakeandcountyourchickens.com/2013/12/31/operation-goal-set-2014/

7) Constant Learning and Growth

Make the decision and the commitment to dedicate your life to constant learning and constant growth. This principle will furnish you with the wisdom, insight, skills, awareness, and consciousness to create true success. Because all success is created in the mind, this work of expanding your consciousness is the most important work you can do for yourself and your future.

Action Step: Start a library of transformational resources (books, CDs, downloads, dvds) and set aside time daily to read, listen, and watch. Personal recommendation: Read for an hour first thing in the morning to set your day and mind off right, and listen to awesome audios whenever driving.

8) Take Action

All the greatest ideas in the world mean nothing if not acted upon. Action takes lots of work, and opens us up to risk – which is why most people avoid it. Action is the moment when thoughts and dreams move from the mental world to the world of reality. The moment you take action you have begun to change your life, and change the world. And remember, you don’t need a perfect plan to get started, you simply need the first plan. Just start wherever you are, today, right now, because that is the perfect plan.

Action Step: Take some form of action immediately! Oder a book or DVD, delete some nasty/toxic fb “friends”, read something rather than watch tv or surf the net, call someone you’ve been avoiding or putting off, share your brilliant idea with a trusted friend, take a walk instead of the couch.

9) Be Willing and Excited to Fail

Nothing gives better information and feedback than failure. The quickest way to succeed, and to break through, is to simply take more chances, dream bigger, and fail more often. Failure is not the enemy – as long as you learn form an experience, it simply moves you closer to success. The fear of failure is the single greatest block to living the life of your dreams. The quickest way to succeed is to simply fail more. Work on letting go of the societal pressure and stigma that goes along with failing. Small people stay safe, don’t risk, and never fail – except at living a big, exciting, fulfilling life. Anyone who has done anything great, life changing or valuable to others has failed…lots! Let failure be your accomplice that tells you you’re living an epic life!

Action Step: Take a chance, get of the fence, and make decision/take action about something important that you’ve been stuck on.

10) Never, Ever Give Up

The one thread you will find that runs through every successful person’s story is that no matter how many times they failed, no matter how many times they stumbled, they never gave up. They simply picked themselves up, dusted off, and got back to it. The only moment you really fail is the moment you give up.

Action Step: If there is a dream you have, or even something highly important and valuable to you that you’ve let go of, dust it off and get back to it. If it’s really important and valuable it shouldn’t be easy to achieve! Anything worth having SHOULD be hard!!

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The Good Dog Training and Rehabilitation 4867 Bellflower Ave. North Hollywood, CA 91601 (818) 441-1837

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