The next several posts will be related to a new book I’m working on. The title – at this time – is Feline Life Lessons. The short life lessons will be accompanied by cat pictures. The pictures will be of my cats and those of my friends/followers. So, if you have cats and some good shots of them, if you feel inspired by the lessons I will cover over the next several posts, please send them along. You will, of course, get full credit for your pic(s).
ASK FOR WHAT YOU WANT – Feline Life Lesson #3
Cats know how to get what they want. We may not speak the same language, but the messages are still clear.
Attention? They will touch your arm, rub against you, look at you and “ask” (meow). My Izzy is a pro at pawing at me until I pay attention. Marlowe will climb on me and start to purr.
Food? They will run toward their food bowl or where the food is stored when you go near. Some will nudge their bowl or knock it over to show it’s empty – or not full to their satisfaction. Marlowe will stretch up and reach out to me. He’s tall enough to touch the top of the countertop when he is at full length. Izzy paws at the cupboard and wanders around the kitchen howling.
Clean my litter? Complaining near the box or using another spot are a pretty clear indication. Izzy will pee in my closet or poop near the box if it’s not clean to his satisfaction. Marlowe isn’t as finicky.
Go outside? Not everyone lets their cats outside. When I first got Marlowe (a beautiful chocolate Siamese), I didn’t want him to go outside. He made it very clear that this was NOT cool. Siamese are famous for being very vocal – not only in quantity but also in quality. He would walk back and forth from one door to the other yowling at the top of his voice. Finally it was either let him out or throttle him. So he got what he wanted.
Do you ask for what you want? The only way to get what you want is to ask for it. It sounds so basic and yet so often we expect our mind to be read. “If he loves me, he should know what I want.” “I really want that promotion. I’m sure my boss will see that I’m the best person for the job.”
When we don’t get what we want even though we didn’t ask for it, we get all bent out of shape. “I can’t believe he got me THAT!” “Really? I’m am so much more qualified than she is!”
I have news for you, if you didn’t ask and you don’t get, it’s your own fault! So start asking.
The other side of the coin is asking for what you want and still not getting it because you weren’t totally clear. For example, I turn 50 next year. I’ve told my partner that I want to have/do something special for this milestone. So far I’m not really clear on what exactly that is. I can leave it in his hands and get what I get – and maybe end up disappointed. Or I can get clear on what I really want and be sure he fully understands.
To get what you want:
- know what you want – be clear with yourself first
- ask for what you want – be absolutely clear and detailed
- be sure you are understood
- if any detail is unclear to the person you are communicating with, repeat it until they understand; realize that you may need to word it differently if it’s unclear to the other person
- if it is a request that will need to be accomplished over a period of time, check in on a regular basis to make sure things are still going according to plan.
Let’s go back to my 50th birthday. Sure, it might be fun to just see what happens. He knows he can collaborate with my sister and best friend. If I choose to go that route and “hope” that he does something I’ll be impressed with. If I do that, I’ll have to be prepared to be happy with whatever I get.
It’s your choice. Ask for exactly what you want or hope for the best because you don’t want to have to tell people what you want. It’s your call. If you opt for the second option, be prepared to be disappointed and don’t blame anyone other than yourself.
I would rather be a cat and be clear and get what I want. It’s a lot more satisfying.
Live Feline Life Lesson #3 and ask for what you want!
Christie Mawer – The Bad Kitty