So Now You Want a FISH?!

As some of us continue to endure the ‘same old – same old’ of quarantine, it is natural for our minds to meander in directions that never had an arrow before. If we’re bored, lonely or feeling useless, we may entertain the thought of having a pet.  Dogs and cats are out – no room/no time – but what about a fish!?  YES… Now you want a FISH!

Now you want a fish?!

We love our pets!  Over 65% of Americans have pets.  The most common pets are cats, then dogs and many other variety of species ranging from birds to horses; and everything in between. No matter the species, we humans tend to humanize our pets — we see them as having similar characteristics to us.  We respond and relate to their personalities – whether they’re sweet and cuddly, or unpredictable little rascals.  When they verbalize, we talk back to them.  When we talk to them, we assume they understand every word.

Across the board, we relate to pets as members of our family.   Which brings up a curious question for those who have fish as their pet of choice.  Because a fish does not vocalize or have the ability to cuddle, how does one relate to a fish???

Fish are the ideal pet for those who are away from home during the day. You don’t have to worry about fish disturbing the neighbors or barking at the UPS driver.  Best of all you don’t have to feel guilty that you left them alone all day, or worry that they will eat your shoes out of boredom. 

Fish are gentle pets.  They glide around their underwater lair, tails swaying to and fro, creating a soothing, hypnotic effect.  If you’ve ever watched fish swim in a tank for a while, you will notice how you just seem to be drawn into their gentle rhythm. Because they provide a consistent presence of calm, fish owners very often view a fish tank as one would view a TV screen., but with very different results.

What do we know of fish?  Do they just swim around all day, aimlessly avoiding that skeleton that pops up from the treasure chest?   

Fish are smart!  They remember which end of the tank their feeding occurs.  When you tap on the tank, not only can fish hear you, they can see you as well – in color!  Yes, call your fish by name when you’re at the tank, and they’ll learn to respond.  Fish have individual personalities.  The more you relate to them, the more they will relate to you.

Fish are social and like the company of other fish.  So 2 or more other fish is recommended so your fish doesn’t get too bored.  And if you’re lucky, they’ll go nose-to-nose with you when you put your face up to the tank.

So if you’ve been craving a pet, but have allergies, limited budget, limited time or fussy neighbors, consider some fish.  Pick out a decent size tank (remember – most fish come from an ocean or lake); pop in some lovely rocks and fauna and whatever else catches your fancy.  Give them lovable names and encourage them to be their cute little selves.      

We are all being called to do extraordinary things for the collective caring of our families, communities and the world in response to the unique coronavirus pandemic. Whether home bound or providing critical services, everyone is stretched to adapt like never before.  All of us are in this together. Now more than ever, caring is what we need most. Caring for our self. Caring for others around us. Life is going to require new routines, resilience and compassion. We invite you to join us in creating a caring movement to respond to local needs.

Would you like to read more about UCA caring resources and products? We have other blogs on Unified Caring Association and our products, caring in our communities, and caring the UCA way!

Happiness = Health

Happiness = Health

Unified Caring Association (UCA) spreads caring in many ways, one of which is through sharing caring research. Often we see notes about how feeling happy more often helps us feel healthier. Recently we came across an article by HarvardHealth Publishing that suggests that there is scientific evidence that positive emotions can result in a longer healthier life. We are all for that! Want to know more? Here are the short notes on how happiness can equal health.

Start on Happy Things

Begin with what makes you happy. Playing with your pets, helping the elderly at a senior center, or painting are just some of the things that people like to do that brings them happiness. Doing things that make you happy also help lower stress levels. Continually and consistently doing things that make us happy lowers our stress levels and could reduce risks of health problems like a heart attack.

3 Pathways to Happiness

During their research on positive psychology, Research Psychologists Martin Seligman and Christopher Peterson examined three pathways to happiness: feeling good, engaging fully and doing good. As seen through the testing of hundreds of volunteers and focus groups, it was found that these pathways contribute to happiness and life satisfaction. 

Feeling good relates to our ability to seek pleasurable emotions. These emotions focus on reaching happiness in an effort to maximize our pleasure and minimize our pain. 

Engaging fully in the pursuit activities that “…engage us fully, from the influential research by Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi. For decades, Csikszentmihalyi explored people’s satisfaction in their everyday activities, finding that people report the greatest satisfaction when they are totally immersed in and concentrating on what they are doing.” (

When we are doing good and doing caring acts that helps others we generate more happiness. More poetically put, doing is “searching for meaning outside yourself, tracing back to Aristotle’s notion of eudemonia, which emphasized knowing your true self and acting in accordance with your virtues.” ( This is a feeling that can happen when you are “getting in the flow.”

How can you know you are in the flow?

What does it mean to be in the flow of things? Is it a fast paced atmosphere where everything seems to be going your way? Or is it when we spend time laughing with those we love? Check out some suggestions below on ways to get in the flow.

-Time just flies by and you realize that you have been working long and hard without feeling tired. The “loss” of time is no big deal, and you would probably do the activity again.

-Your mind is not occupied with your activities of your internal thoughts. “You aren’t focused on your comfort, and you aren’t wondering how you look or how your actions will be perceived by others. Your awareness of yourself is only in relation to the activity itself, such as your fingers on a piano keyboard, or the way you position a knife to cut vegetables, or the balance of your body parts as you ski or surf.” (

-You are present in the moment. This means not thinking about the daily “to-do” list that is sitting on your desk, refrigerator, etc.  An example is that you aren’t thinking about such mundane matters as your shopping list or what to wear tomorrow.

-Keeping an active mind and an active body. This can be done through learning music, reading books, playing sports, or going for a hike.

-You work effortlessly. “Flow activities require effort (usually more effort than involved in typical daily experience). Although you may be working harder than usual, at flow moments everything is “clicking” and feels almost effortless.” (

It is clear that whatever we choose to do, if it makes us happy, it is good for our health. When we do good we can get a bonus boost when we are helping others feel good too!

Unified Caring Association is constantly striving to help create a more caring world. We love sharing more caring information on our website and through blogs that share caring in our community, activities, and reviews. We also send out caring posts on our social media accounts (Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, and Twitter) to give inspiration throughout the week.

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