This is not some kind of pep talk about being happy and relaxed all the time. Though it would be great if we all were, nobody is happy-go-lucky all the time.
We Get Stressed And Relay That To Our Horses
If you are reading this, you probably know that horses are very perceptive and in tune with our energy and body language. They can read us like a book, as we can do the same with them by observing their body language.
Don’t Set Yourself Up For Failure
If you had a bad day at work and are feeling super tense. Take a deep breath and see if you can get your brain to slow down and your muscles to relax.
Sometimes we can succeed at calming and relaxing. Other times we can’t.
If you don’t think you can shake it, just do something laid back with your horse. Hand grazing, grooming, etc…
When you get on your horse in a bad state of mind you are setting yourself up for failure. Don’t do that! Nothing that you want to practice is so important that one day off will ruin everything.
Calm and Confident
The energy we should strive to have around our horses is calm and confident. They are always more relaxed when we are relaxed.
Horses are always looking for a leader. This is because, in the wild, there is a boss horse, that leads and all the others follow. You want to be that leader for your horse. Calm and confident so they have no reason to be tense around you. If you are calm and confident, your horse will look to you to be that leader if sketchy conditions arise.
If something scary happens, like your horse spooks at something, if you act just as scared as your horse it makes you both tenser. The horses need us to be calm when they are not. I know this is easier said than done. If you can at least keep it in the back of your mind, you will slowly get more confident. This leads me to my next point.
We have to be assertive with our horses. Just like the famous dog trainer, Cesar Milan says, we must give our dogs “calm assertive” energy.
The same thing goes for horses. When you are handling your horse you need to be calm and deliberate. If they make a mistake, keep the same energy level but correct them right away.
If you ask your horse to do something and they don’t, calmly and assertively insist that they do. You are the leader remember and so your horse needs to take the direction from you.
Problems arise when we are not assertive with our horses and they learn that they can walk all over us, and take advantage of us.
To Wrap It All Up
Our horses need to respect us in order for us to be safe. The more calm and assertive you are when you work with your horse the better your relationship will be. Remember, your horse is looking for a leader when he is not in the herd. That leader should be you.
If you don’t think you are in the right headspace to do this, no worries! We all have bad days!
Just sit in a sunny spot and relax, watch your horse doing his thing in the field. Then be grateful for the fact that we have horses in our lives!