There are so many dog trainers that start off with the right mindset only to eventually get burned out and QUIT.
"Not me! Dog Training is my Passion". No trust me, it can and it WILL happen to you, the trick is to be able to see it before it gets too out of hand.
Before I give you some tips, you have to remember that your brain is wired to create shortcuts. This is why a difficult task eventually becomes second nature if practiced enough. It's too exhausting so you naturally have the ability to go on autopilot. Your subconscious takes over and before you know it you don't have to put that much mental effort into a task that once seemed incredibly difficult.
Let's face it, despite the appeal of training dogs and working with animals, dog training can be very monotonous. Eventually it can seem like you're just stuck and all you're doing is teaching the same thing again and again. Sometimes it's work.
Remember why you started.
There are a number of reasons you decided to become a dog trainer, but there's one in particular that made you take that leap. Go back to that reason(s) and let that reason drive you when dog training starts to seem like a chore.
For many of us that reason was "I hate what I do, I want to work with animals". So remember what you used to do and realize that even though this industry has its downs, it still beats stocking boxes on a shelf or working in a cubicle.
Another thing you can do is realize what your life would be like if you didn't train dogs. What would you do? would it mean you'd have to go back to that job that doesn't fulfill you?
I've found that going back to this as a way to motivate me has helped me many times when dog training feels like a chore.
Take on a hobby!
Seriously if you don't take time off, you're gonna burn yourself out. I don't care how much you love to train dogs, you have to take time and focus on yourself. This will allow you to reset and come back fresh. But it's necessary!
Imagine your favorite dish! or dessert. Now imagine you have to eat that every single day, 3 times per day. You probably wouldn't last more than a few days before you got sick and tired of your favorite dish. So please take time off.
Here are some things you can do:
You can start a workout regimen and set fitness goals.
You can go shooting once per week or once a month.
You can pursue something new on the side (a new language, study a new subject, etc.)
You can plan vacations months or weeks in advance (doesn't have to be a long vacation, it can be a whole day where you just go on a hike, camping, etc.)
You could do a combination of these.
There have been times in my career where I felt every dog acted and looked the same because I was literally training dog after dog, all day long.
What helped me here was to set goals. I told myself things like: "I have to learn something new from this next dog", "Next training session I will be more creative on my approach", "Next month I will read this many books on dog training".
By setting goals you're getting your brain out of that routine pattern. You're actually telling your brain to go look for new things.
I realize this isn't really a tip, it's more of an option I'm giving you. It's OK to move on. You don't have to train dogs if you feel this no longer fulfills you. Maybe you gave it a try and you found out cleaning dog poop off the ground from time to time isn't your thing.
Maybe the risk of getting bit here and there isn't something you're willing to live with. This is all OK, you can move on. No one cares, you need to do what you feel is best for you.
A WORD OF CAUTION. What you don't want to do is quit. Everyone gets tired, everyone gets bored. The going gets tough in EVERY industry and EVERY professional field. If you ask anyone who has accomplished anything or anyone who is very happy with their career choice you'll see that they too had tough times and that there were many times they wanted to quit. I myself have felt this way a handful of times.
What you don't want to do is quit during these times because what will end up happening is you'll take that quitting attitude to the next phase in your life. You'll do something else, you'll get bored and you'll quit again. So be careful with this.
Only move on if you feel like this truly doesn't fulfill you. If you don't see yourself doing this long term and there are things you truly feel more compelled doing. In other words, if you already have something in sight that you know will make all the difference in your life and it has nothing to do with dog training, then yes, it's time to move on.
If you simply are tired, exhausted and bored and feel like you just want to stop, that's not moving on, that's quitting.