Today is National Puppy Day in the US and I thought I would take a few moments to appreciate the amazing change to my life that Indie-Dog has made not just at home but in my work too.
I haven’t had a dog since I was a little girl and a lifetime of longing finally delivered Indie in August 2020. It hadn’t been the right time for us or a dog before this as both my husband and I worked long hours and often needed to be away from home.
Lockdown brought working from home followed by the threat of redundancy and with it, serious consideration of setting up a business of my own. Several wonderful conversations with two of my colleagues later and we had a plan to bring together our shared expertise into one team and fabulously The LaunchBox was conceived.
Indie will never know the role that she plays in the development of The LaunchBox plan. We acquired her over lockdown, which as many expert vets will advise, is not the best time to have a puppy. They need extensive socialisation in order to grow into a well-rounded dog and restricted meetings meant we had to be super creative about how to expose her to people, places and events to build her experience of the world. Fortunately, our social bubble contained two dogs and Indie quickly became part of the back-garden pack and then we ventured out into the big bad world on dog walks and my life changed irrevocably.
Dog owners are in the main, wonderful, supportive, caring, friendly people. On our walks we met so many lovely people and their canine offspring. We met new friends where I only ever knew the name of the dogs for weeks, but we would chat in a socially distanced way whilst our pooches smooched together and did what dogs do at first meeting; Wag tails, sniff, wag tails some more, accept as friend, play. I did much the same with their owners (without the sniffing. Obviously, that is hard when you have to socially distance) and soon we had a whole new network of people to pass the time of day with and share experiences with.
Every single day I had to get out of bed and take Indie on her daily sniff hunt. There wasn’t an option to fall back into bed, turn over and forget the mess of the world for a few more hours; and believe me it would have been so easy to do so on many days. But the insistence of an Indie bark and quickly learned skill of duvet removing, meant I had to get out and start my day.
Within only a few weeks I realised what a positive impact she was having on my work life too. I was more invigorated due to the exercise; I try for 5km a day or more whereas during pre-Indie days I had known days when I had struggled to make 500 steps as I walked from bedroom to kitchen to home office each day. I also found that I had more to talk about as I was learning from my new friends we encountered in the fields and lanes around my home. As I was walking, I was taking time to reflect on work issues and come up with creative solutions that I would have struggled to reach at my desk. I was working out my frustrations on our daily yomp, so I felt calmer and more able to approach our early day concerns with a positive and pro-active state of mind.
My Indie-Dog has changed my life forever and I don’t know how I functioned without her in it. The determination to make our growing business a success is deeply founded in a need to continue to work from home whenever I can so that I can share my day with her. I am immensely grateful to our wonderful clients and my ever-amazing fellow directors, that they also appreciate that occasionally Indie can pop up on a conference call and make her opinion known. I like to think she brings a bit of canine humour to the conversation.
So, on National Puppy Day, I want to say thank you to Indie and all other dog owners and their fur babies in my area. You have indeed made my Lockdown bearable and given clarity and further passion to drive the ongoing success of The Launchbox and definitely made me an easier person to live with.