Ways Pets Improve Mental Health- 4

If you have (or once had) a pet, you know how important pets can be in our lives and our overall sense of well-being!  This week, Imagine Hope discusses the different ways that pets can improve our mental health. Pets give a sense of purpose

If you've been a pet parent, you know the all too familiar nudge at 6:00 a.m. for them to go outside and potty or eat breakfast.  This may seem frustrating at times when you want to sleep in, but pets can give us a sense of purpose-- a reason to get out of bed and face the day.  They are dependent on us to take care of them, and their unconditional love gives us a feeling of being appreciated and being important.

Pets need a lot of care, love, and attention, beyond grooming and being fed.  This gives us the ability to connect to something outside of ourselves, especially when you feel stuck in the muck of your own life.  There's nothing like being greeted at the door by your pet after a long day at work to put a smile on your face!

Joleen Watson, MS, LMFTA, NCC, is a therapist at Imagine Hope Counseling Group. She enjoys doing marriage counseling, relationship counseling, couples counseling, and individual counseling.  Imagine Hope also specializes in family, child and adolescent counseling and serves Indianapolis area including the surrounding areas of Carmel, Noblesville, Zionsville, Westfield, and Fishers.