“What do I want for my relationship with my horse this year? And how do I get there?” are questions we ask with the beginning of this new year.
One of the most desired goals for riders is to find unity with their horse; that deep connection that allows you to dance in harmony together. How do you get there?
- When you create a goal you want to get clear about what you really want. For example, I want to understand my horse better, I want to be more deeply connected with my horse, I want to create a partnership where my horse can read my thoughts.
- How would reaching your goal look and feel like? The better you can see and feel your goal (unity/connection) the better you can find ways to reach it.
- Next you want to ask yourself: What concrete steps do I need to take to reach this goal.
For example if your goal is to create a deeper connection with your horse you want to look at the different components that are involved in this relationship:
The partnership between you and your horse has three components: your horse, you and the two of you together. All parts need to come into balance to create unity.
The horse: In general we ask our horse to listen to us. We request the horse to do certain things and expect the horse to perform perfectly every time. The horse is in general a willing partner and loves to be in unity too. It does its best to find the right answers to our requests.
If we want to be more connected with our horse we need to make sure that this partnership is not one-sided and that we also listen to our horse. When we listen deeply and patiently we can identify the moment the horse offers the right answer and reward the horse.
Horses naturally look for leadership. Your horse is willing to trust and follow you if you prove yourself as a calm, patient, confident, consistent, non-confrontational leader. The horse gives you an opportunity to explore your inner strengths and be authentic. This is the gift of personal growth your horse offers to you.
The rider and horse handler: When we think of what the rider has to bring to the partnership we often focus on refining our physical abilities such as riding aids, seat… But if we want to create unity with our horse there is more we need to bring to this partnership. Unity is developed from the inside out and requires personal growth from us.
Horses are prey animals whose survival depends on reading the emotional and mental state of all the beings in its environment. Your horse reads your emotional and mental state all the time. Thus, clearing your emotional and mental body is essential to reduce the background noise in your communication and prevent confusion for the horse.
Enhanced body awareness helps you to provide your horse with clear body language. Learning to scan your body for tension will help you to relax and open yourself to the flow of the horse’s movements so that you can dance together.
The leadership qualities of confidence, patience, consistency, clarity and non-confrontational behavior develop naturally when you engage in personal growth and understand who you really are. Understanding your personal strengths helps you to increase your self-confidence and be authentic. Authenticity is the key foundation for trustworthy leadership.
Looking through the eyes of our horse is another important quality we can bring to this partnership. Horses function und think very differently than humans. When we can view the world through our horse’s eyes we can find solutions that are beneficial for both of us.
The partnership: Most horses are ready for the deep connection we are looking for. They are just waiting for us to get out of our own way. When we bring body awareness, emotional and mental clarity and leadership qualities to our horses, we lay the foundation to a synergistic partnership where 1 + 1 = 3, meaning that the partnership is more powerful than the single components (horse, rider) going into it.
When you are willing to engage in personal growth you gain a lot more than deepen your relationship with your horse. Personal qualities such as mental and emotional clarity, body awareness, leadership skills and empower you in your daily life. You will make better decisions and overcome obstacles with more ease. So when you contemplate your goals for your horse this year, consider your own personal growth.
What personal growth areas would you like to strengthen to bring your relationship with your horse to the next level? Motivational coaching can help you enhance your personal growth to experience a deeper partnership with your horse and live an empowered life.
Email or call me if you have questions. I would love talking to you.