Cats are master teachers when it comes to living more mindfully, enjoying the present moment and cutting loose with raw, unadulterated joy. And just when we think they couldn’t get any smarter than us, we notice their knack for natural living. Not that we’d want to follow their model to the letter — or to the litter — but our kitties can offer some valuable insight if we pay attention Here are six ways our cats are natural examples.
Less stuff means less consumption, right? Sometimes we humans are determined to accumulate the latest gadgets and all the coolest clothes, but cats show us we really don’t need those things to live a happy life. They prefer a more minimalist approach. Case in point: When we think they’ll be head over paws about some electronic, catnip-stuffed, flying vampire mouse, they lose their minds over the plain cardboard box in which the toy arrived. And that milk jug ring turned cat toy? That’s a shining example of repurposing, folks. Lesson learned — thanks, cats!
Cats loaf on the throne of water conservation by opting to scratch and cover instead of flush. Some litters are even made with environmentally conscious materials. Now, we’re not suggesting that you haul a human-sized box of pine pellets into your home and squat when nature calls … but that sure would make for an interesting photo op.
Listening to our bodies and responding to their needs is a perfectly natural way to live. Unfortunately, for most of us, we have those pesky roadblocks like work, grocery shopping, cooking and “whatnot” that get in the way. When we want desperately to nap because our bodies and minds feel drained, we can’t always just stop working. Can you imagine approaching your superior with, “Yeah, I’m gonna have to skip that critical budget meeting because I need a little snooze with my favorite blankie.” That’d go over really well.
Cats, on the other hand, have no one to answer to, no meals to cook and less “whatnot” than anyone we know. Of course, it takes 12 to 16 hours per day of sleep for those little darlings to manage their energy, and we couldn’t work that kind of nap into most of our schedules; however, cats remind us to pay attention to our body’s natural rhythms and squeeze in some extra rest here and there.
Cats are masters of improvisation when it comes to choosing a spot to chillax. They don’t need some memory foam, pillow-top, adjustable mattress model. In fact, we sometimes think, “How in the world is that even comfortable?” upon seeing them lounging atop a tape dispenser or king-sized tube of foot cream. They can stop, drop and sleep at a moment’s notice, making the most out of whatever surface happens to be below their feet. Maybe we humans are just whiny little snowflakes with our pocket coils and gel-infused foam. Perhaps a nap on a pile of warm towels would be as heavenly as cats make it look.
Many of us have rituals when it comes to showering or skin care. We stock our favorite self-care products, and some of them aren’t cheap. Our kitties flick their tail at our ongoing beautification efforts because they use the most natural product available to them: their spit. It’s cleansing, environmentally friendly (at least to them),
and there’s an endless supply of the stuff. Less is sometimes more. If only we had such a handy solution — well, we do, but eww.
In an effort to reduce traffic and decrease pollution, some humans are making strides in the right direction by riding bikes, taking public transportation, ride-sharing and walking. Cats, as usual, were ahead of us by leaps and bounds — they just didn’t know it.
Our felines are not out there releasing exhaust and fumes while they commute from their cat condo to the kitchen (we won’t speak of fumes from the litter box). And if they need to get somewhere, they walk, although some cuddly kitties hitch a ride with a willing human. Would that be considered catpooling?