|Posted by cntrares on February 6, 2014 at 10:15 AM|
Just realized that I’ve neglected my blog the past couple of months! Oops! Here’s the first of hopefully many more entries this year.
In our horsemanship journey, it’s very easy to make excuses:
“This darn weather, I can’t do anything with my horse.”
“My horse would be doing that if he wasn’t an introvert (orextrovert). I’d have that task done.”
“I just don’t have the money (time, etc.).”
“If I was younger (or older), I could do that.”
You get the idea- when it comes to our weaknesses, we often shy away from taking responsibility for them. It can be hard to admit that we could be better…that we could try harder. Some of us find it hard to admit because we’re perfectionists and feel self-conscious about our shortcomings. Others feel guilty, frustrated, etc.Consciously making a discussion to stop making excuses can lead to big progressin your horsemanship! If you stop making excuses, you can become a puzzle solver. We teach our horses to be puzzle solvers, so shouldn’t we lead the way and remedy our own excuses?
When you stop making excuses, it’s empowering! It causes you to take ownership of your journey in both its ups and downs. You have an active stake in how you learn and grow, and in turn, the results.
Pat Parelli says we should expect a lot and accept a little from our horses. Shouldn’t we expect and accept likewise from ourselves? We make-up half of the horse/human partnership, so be sure your holding-up your responsibilities too! But when you do catch yourself making an excuse (it’s probably inevitable that you will!), don’t be too critical of yourself either. Our shortfalls are how we learn to be better, so don’t carry the burden of them around. Let go and move forward!
When we find our horses have a hole in their foundation, we seekout exercises to fill-it in. Likewise, when you take ownership of a weakness, seek out education, exercises, and support that will help you become stronger in that area.
In my recent goal setting lessons with students, there is a line in one of the worksheets that says, “Make sure the actions are with-in your control. You aren’t making a to-do list for someone else!” So, when you are looking for strategies for self-improvement, don’t pick ones that rely on other people and environments you can’t influence.
Now you might be saying, that’s great, but I can’t ever influence the weather. True, but here’swhere you can employ your puzzle solving skills. Is there something you were struggling with in the fall in your sessions with your horse? Now is the perfect time to watch videos, read articles, brainstorm, make a clear plan or have a chat with another savvy friend. A discussion with another passionate horse lover is almost as good as playing with your horse! I always find myself uplifted and rejuvenated after a good chat about horsemanship with a peer! Of course, your horse still has to be fed, no matter how cold it gets, so spend an extra minute or two playing with respect at feeding time each day since you’ve got to go outside anyway. Can you teach your horse to wait patiently till you allow him to eat? Not only will feeding time become less stressful for all, but I bet you’ll see improvements in other areas of your relationship this spring!
So, own your journey in 2014! If you ever need support or want to have a chat in these winter months, I’m always here for you. Embrace a positive, progressive, and natural attitude this year and join me in saying NO to excuses.