For the horse lovers who put relationship first…
So many of us try to put our relationship with the horse we love on a sliding scale. We (knowingly or unknowingly) measure the progress of our bond. “How was our relationship doing today? Did my horse want to do X activity with me? What techniques do I need to do in order bring our relationship closer?
I’ve fallen into this mindset and truthfully I don’t believe it really helps our relationship with horses. I think it distracts us from having present experiences with them. It returns us to a competitive mentality. “How well are we doing?” “Am I up to par with other people and their relationships with their horses?”
When we judge our relationship with our horses based on how “well” we are doing, we return to a performance based mentality, quite like we are taught in the traditional training. For those who love their horses and so badly wish to connect deeply with them, this line of thinking is often exhausting, disheartening, and quite honestly, counterproductive. To truly set our horses and ourselves free and to truly enjoy authentic relationships and experiences with the horses we love, we must let go of the need to judge “how we are doing ” even if (especially if) it is in regards to something pure intention-ed like relationship, and instead appreciate & just let be.
By letting go and simply enjoying what is there – enjoying the relationship and love without needing to analyze or categorize it – in the present moment we find the unconditional happiness we are looking for with our horses.
Trust in your authentic connection. It doesn’t need to look like anyone else – it doesn’t need to be hyper-analyzed by yourself and compared to your own self-enforced standards. Just allow it to be. Enjoy it. Appreciate it for all that it already is. It is enough – they are enough – you are enough.