Living Your Own Horsemanship Journey and Not the Goals and Dreams of Someone Else
“I want to be a horsemanship instructor.”
“I want to do team penning.”
“I want to do dressage.”
And the list could go on and on of potential goals and dreams.
But no one usually admits, “I want a lawn ornament, just having my horse eat grass and enjoy watching him do it.”
But what if that is where you truly are at? What if you are content to “just trail ride” or “just pet and treat” or “just pony the children around”? Should other people’s dreams and goals make us ashamed of our own? No.
One thing that I learned from our Horsemanship Play Group was that it was more than okay to own my goals and dreams and be okay with that. I did not need to compare myself with others. Our joy came as we supported each individual to be the best partner we could be for our own horses. We grew into owning our own journey and supported each other as they did the same.
We had one young lady, (wave to the crowd, Keri-Lynn, we are looking at you) who pushes herself endlessly, loving learning and excelling at advancing in her horsemanship journey using the Parelli program, aiming at completing level five and entering the beyond. That was her goal, not shared by many of the others in the group. And that works for her.
We had a young mother of two, who loves her horses endlessly and passionately, yet loves her children more, and dedicates her time to them, knowing that the future could give her time to continue her career advancement in horsemanship. But for this time period, her journey was relaxed learning and overcoming past horsemanship issues. And that works for her.
Another energetic, dynamic lady, our fearless leader, immigrated to Canada years ago, family, horse and all. Her horse took may years of special training and care and persistent love, language and leadership. She is encouraging others to learn and enjoy horses, even as she is busy with her farm, business and family too. And that works for her.
For each individual, the story is different, the journey is different, the lessons learned, different. Yet why do we compare ourselves to those who aim to make horsemanship their profession, when all we want is to trial ride, or spend time just sitting and admiring our horses as they graze?
Why do we not own our own dream?
- My dream seems so small and insignificant.I am embarrassed to say all I want to do is enjoy a simple relationship with my horse and not do anything big and great. What a waste of money.
- My dream seems so big and frightening. I am over whelmed and don’t know how to get to where I want to go. What if I fail? What if I am not good enough to achieve this goal?
- My dream seems so unattainable. I don’t have the time, money, support. It seems out of my reach to get to the place I want to be because I don’t seem to have the resources. So why admit I have a dream or even bother to dream?
- My dream seems to get lost in the day to day life. I am too busy with the cares of life and existing takes most of my energy. Who has time to dream anyways?
- My dream seems to take to much courage to admit it. If I tell my friends what I really want to do they may laugh and discourage me. Or they may tell me not to waste my life or my horses potential, if all I want is to trail ride, and own a Thoroughbred.
- My dream seems unrealistic as no matter how hard I try I can’t make progress.I spend hours with my horse, but he still does not change or improve. I feel helpless, frustrated and discouraged. Why would I tell anyone?
- My dream seems so undefinable. I sort of know what I want, yet I am not sure what to call it or how to get there, or even what things I should do. What are goals anyway?
How do I own my own goals, dreams and horsemanship journey?
- Be brave. Admit your dream, no matter how big or small. It is yours, live it and enjoy.
- Seek support. Find a local horsemanship play group. Cultivate personal, positive, like minded friendships. Seek out people like Keri-Lynn who have the desire to help you succeed.
- Educate yourself. Find a good source of educational materials to improve your knowledge. Knowledge empowers growth. Michael Hyatt says, “ ‘hire the best coaches and instructors you can afford.’ For years, the most I could afford was to check out a book from the library. Don’t worry about what you can’t afford or do. Focus, instead, on what you can afford and do that.” Watch You Tube videos about other people’s horsemanship journey. That is basically free!
- Refuse to be intimidated or jealous of the journey of someone else. We are on different paths. Give yourself permission to be you on your own path. “Never compare your beginning to someone else’s middle…Love your dream and your adventure enough to allow it to grow slowly.”
- Listen to your horse. Not all horse may want to do dressage, or race, or excel at jumping. Find your horse’s skills and talents and develop along with him. This is empowering to the relationship. Respect your equine partner.
Let’s talk. Are you owning your own dream for your horsemanship? Are you stuck? How can I help you find the joy of the journey you personally are on with your horse today? Please leave a comment in the section down below and let’s encourage one another on our individual journey.
Written by Rose Standish, Life Coach, Biblical Educator and Author
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