Finding My Balance – Animals as Therapy
When Arc Aspicio was a very young company, we had the pleasure of having our mascot, Magnum in our offices with us. Around 3PM each day, he would come into our shared workspace and want to play. If you have seen Magnum’s picture on our website, you will notice that he is a dog who would not be ignored!
As a result, one or more of us would pause our work and play tug or fetch with him. While there were days when I felt that the last thing I needed was to be pulled away from work, this short break often helped me to feel more focused and energized .
In one of our very first corporate strategy sessions, we took this idea and created our “Dogs Rule” motto. We often use this as a reminder to keep our work in perspective and our lives in balance. One way our company helps to support this balance is by giving each employee volunteer hours that he/she can use towards any activity, charity, or community effort that helps him or her to feel more connected and in balance with the people around them.
Now that Arc Aspicio has grown out of our first office and I can no longer get my daily playtime with Magnum, I find my balance at a small horse farm near my home in Maryland working with therapy horses and the children and adults who benefit from their unique skills and temperaments. Even though we are close to the DC/Baltimore metro area, the farm seems like a world away. The tranquility of the space and animals combined with the visible evidence of the physical, developmental, and emotional healing give me a feeling of calm and satisfaction that I do not get elsewhere. Spending time there helps to remind me how fortunate I am and to recharge me to better focus on my personal and work efforts.
These are hectic times, with demands on our time and energy from work, family, etc. As Arc Aspicio encourages our employees, so would I encourage everyone to find the outlet that helps you find your balance.
 Magnum passed away earlier this year.