Published July 6, 2023
Blog Archive

Leadership Lessons from a Fetch-Loving Dog


Leadership lessons can often emerge from unexpected sources. As a dog lover myself, I have a special companion named Sabaka, a big dog who adores playing fetch. Now, you might wonder, what does this have to do with leadership? Well, Sabaka’s unwavering determination to hold onto the ball offers a valuable insight into our own growth journeys as leaders, parents, and individuals. Sometimes, in order to move forward and attain what we truly desire, we must learn to let go. So, let’s explore how Sabaka’s refusal to drop the ball can inspire us to identify and release what is holding us back.

The Unyielding Grip

Sabaka’s love for playing fetch knows no bounds. He would happily engage in the game all day long. However, there’s one catch—he won’t let go of the ball. This familiar scenario serves as a metaphor for many of our leadership journeys. We often encounter situations where we’re reluctant to release something, even when deep down, we know it’s necessary for our growth and progress. Just like Sabaka’s refusal to drop the ball, our own reluctance to let go can hinder us from reaching our full potential.

The Importance of Letting Go

In order to move forward, we must learn to let go of what no longer serves us. This could be a limiting belief, a toxic relationship, a fear of failure, or even our own comfort zones. Letting go creates space for new opportunities, fresh perspectives, and personal growth. It allows us to break free from the confines of our current circumstances and take bold steps towards what we truly desire. Just as Sabaka’s game of fetch requires him to release the ball in order to continue playing, our own journey as leaders demands that we relinquish what holds us back.

Identifying What Needs to be Released

To embark on this journey of letting go, it’s essential to identify what we need to release. Take a moment to reflect on your own life and leadership role. What is weighing you down? What habits, beliefs, or situations are hindering your progress? Perhaps it’s the fear of delegating tasks, the reluctance to give up control, or the tendency to hold onto past mistakes. Pinpointing these areas allows us to take intentional action and create positive change.

Embracing Growth and Progress

By embracing the act of letting go, we open ourselves up to growth and progress. As leaders, it’s important to continuously evolve, adapt, and learn. Just as Sabaka’s refusal to drop the ball limits his ability to engage fully in the game, our own attachment to what we should release can restrict our development. When we release our grip on the ball—be it fear, control, or self-doubt—we create space for new ideas, perspectives, and possibilities. It is in these moments of release that we experience transformative growth and unlock our true potential.


Leadership lessons can often emerge from unexpected sources, and in this case, Sabaka’s unwavering grip on the ball provides valuable insights into our own growth journeys. Letting go of what no longer serves us is a necessary step towards progress and personal development. By identifying what we need to release and embracing the act of letting go, we create space for growth, new opportunities, and a greater impact as leaders. So, I challenge you today to reflect on what you’re holding onto tightly and consider how releasing it can propel you towards the next level of your leadership journey. Remember, you can’t play fetch if you don’t drop the ball. I wish you all the best in your endeavors. Until next time, take care and keep exploring new frontiers in leadership!

Note: This blog post draws inspiration from Sabaka:

YouTube video

Kristine Medyanik

Dr. Kristine Medyanik has been teaching business and psychology classes, for many years. She started Shattered Glass Leadship to offer boutique-style workshops that provide expert content to “level up” your daily leadership practice. She has an amazing husband and 3 growing boys and works hard to support local women-owned small businesses.