We have a new dog in our house: a 103 pound Great Pyrenees. Our 19 pound orange cat is not pleased by this.
The cat, Yellow Cat, has hidden under the bed and barely eaten for a week.
You are probably thinking that this is because Rain, the new dog, will not let her, but that is not the case.
Great Pyrenees are herd dogs. They are bred to manage herds and bark at predators. Yellow Cat is not her herd and is not a predator, and thus is about as interesting to her as a kitchen cabinet.
Yellow Cat, on the other hand, has decided that Rain is a post apocalyptic monster. When we have tried to introduce them, Rain is quite uninterested except for the fact that our hand on the cat could be better put to use scratching her ear.
While Rain looks bored, Yellow pins her ears back, opens her eyes wide, hisses and spits.
You see, Yellow has concocted and entire narrative about this dog in her head which is completely separate from reality. She believes the she has to hide, that she is in danger, that she cannot eat.
But there is only one thing in the house preventing Yellow Cat from going about her day: Yellow Cat.
Yellow Cat has never been a particularly smart cat. That’s why she is only named Yellow Cat.
However, I have seen very smart humans do much the same thing.
We invent monsters to be afraid of.
We create insurmountable obstacles to stop us.
We hold ourselves back from our best lives because of narratives we create in our own imaginations.
Events are not good or bad but what we make them. The dog entering the house is far more of an impact on Yellow Cat’s mindset than on the actual facts of her life.
The same is true if we lose a job, move, end a relationship, get a promotion, graduate school, or anything else.
Every event creates a new set of circumstances which we can deal with in any number of ways. Too often, like Yellow Cat, we interpret the events in such a way as to limit our own choices far more than circumstances do while failing to recognize the opportunities.
This big fluffy dog is lonely when we’re not around, and Yellow Cat is as well (although probably not as worried about it). She could have a buddy if she could see past the terror she has imagined.
What could you have if you could see past the monsters you have created in your own imagination?
Do you find yourself allowing imaginary monsters to hold you back? Let’s talk about it. I can often help people get clear where the real obstacles are and are not. Click here to schedule a call with no cost or obligation.