I can have the worst day—I’m talking nothing goes right, full-out, down in the dumps kind of day—and as soon as I walk in my front door, it all changes.

It would certainly be romantic to say that my lover can instantly change my mood or that merely being home lifts my spirits. But, the reality is, it’s my pups that have the power to instantly brighten my day.

As soon as they hear the front gate open, they are at the front door, excited to greet me the instant the door opens. They are jumping up and down, tails wagging a million miles a minute, and usually Max is peeing all over my feet because he’s so excited. It is literally the most endearing thing I’ve ever witnessed.

And this is the way they live every second of their lives. When playing fetch with Eli, he is so focused on the ball that nothing can get in his way or distract him. Max is so intent on licking your face that he will do whatever it takes to get a lick, never discouraged when you push him away. In fact, as I write this, Eli is demanding that Russell play with him, while Max is jumping at my feet for a chance at licking my face. They personify (dog-ify?) living life with intensity.

I look at them and think that it’s got to be tiring to live with that much dedication to everything, to put that much effort into every second of life.

But, think how much more rewarding life would be if we stopped giving a B effort, procrastinating, or compromising, and instead put all of ourselves into what we do: if we put all of ourselves into our work, our relationships, our own happiness.

What if we too lived life with intensity, tenaciously and unwaveringly pursuing what we want in life?

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