Feelings a deeper communication
Spring is finally here, the time of growth.
Over the past weeks I have started to notice the impact I can have on the beings around me, especially horses.
I don’t just mean the physical impact but the emotional impact.
I have become aware of the importance of self-awareness, noticing how, what and where I am feeling something. What that might be telling me about the situation.
Even just noticing your own breathing or how you are looking at something.
To be honest I thought I had been quite aware of how I was feeling, but it wasn’t until it was pointed out to me that I was not breathing properly that I started thinking about why that might be. But also how that must be affecting my horse.
I noticed changes in my horses when I was breathing deeply such as more connection, lightness and willingness.
I sometimes wonder why my horse has gotten a little tense or disconnected and then I realise that I have stopped breathing deeply. As soon as I become aware of that, the lightness and connection returns.
I wonder if it has to do with the fact that when we are not noticing the changes, sensations and feelings in our bodies we might be disconnected and thinking rather than feeling, the awareness isn’t there.
I personally feel that horsemanship has more to do with feeling than thinking. The horse lives from a feeling point of few, acts upon what he is feeling.
Thinking allows us to go to the past as well as future, taking us away from the now.
But what I am trying to explain is when you are aware of those sensations and feelings, you are in the now, because you have brought the awareness back to you.
The feeling and the now are on the same line.
For instance when you are coming up to a corner, you might be thinking about what you have to do to ride the corner. So therefor you are already ahead of time. I am not saying having a plan causes to be ahead of time but it is the thinking that can get us ahead of time.
Because when we are thinking we might not be aware of what we are feeling on the inside (our body), outside (environment), as well as the horse- where his feet are, how his body is feeling, where he might be at.
It is about having that whole awareness that allows us to be part of the horse.
I always imagine “ being in the now” like a line that moves at the speed of time, I am not behind or in front or go faster or slower.
I have found that often in horsemanship we look at what and why the horse is tense, disconnected, shut down, naughty etc. We look at the situation, environment, stage of development.
But I wonder how often we look at ourselves and explore if there is something going on within us that is then reflected in the horse. Are we disconnected, tense, shut down, worried etc. ? Are we even aware of that?
So rather than fixing the horse’s “problem” can we use that information to see whether that is actually us having an impact on the horse.
Becoming aware of the feeling of the whole – human, horse and environment. What is that sensation like, is it calm, rushed, tense, peaceful?
Use that information to broaden the awareness, feeling /seeing the world from a more horse focused way.
I believe this allows us to have a even deeper level of communication with the horse because they are always telling us, but it’s whether we are ready to listen or not.