Pressure to Work - on Equestians


Does anyone ever feel pressure to “work” with the horse and feel guilty when you don’t really want to? I personally have heard a lot of people feel shame about this... judging ourselves, thinking if that we don’t feel inspired or motivated to “work” or even “play” with the horses in our lives, that we aren’t good horses people - we are dedicated - we don’t love horses enough.
I’ve certainly felt this pressure and this shame before, so much so that after a long time fighting it I actually just “gave in” and thought that maybe I wasn’t meant to “do horses” any more.

It’s funny because in giving myself the freedom to let it go, I found my inspiration again, only this time, guilt and shame free. It no longer defined me, and so finally, I felt liberated.
Now, I don’t feel very attached to the idea of “trainer” or even “equestrian” and that has made more room for the joy and love of horses in my life.
Still, I remember that pressure - that need to be “better”.
I’ve felt that in many areas of my life...

And letting go of it all, slowly breaking it down, convincing myself that I “don’t have anything to fix” has been one the most worthwhile, sometimes difficult, and most freeing processes of my adult life.
The need to “fix” or “change” or “reach our potential” for who we are supposed to be is exhausting and honestly always kept me away from what I really wanted. I’m so grateful that I felt this with the horses and had to seemingly “give up” in order to find the joy again. What I really needed was freedom from all the restraints and guilt I had put on myself.

Do you feel this guilt led behavior with horsemanship and training? Or with other things you love in your life? I have friends who have felt trapped in their passions - music, art, etc - because of the identity and pressure to “be” something, rather than to enjoy.
I’d really love to hear your experiences. I know none of us are alone in it. We are so conditioned to “fix” ourselves, when really, we’ve always been whole, no matter what or how we are doing.