Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Extroverts have the jump on us introverts when it comes to getting started! The chances of an action-motivated extrovert just doing ‘something’ is greater than an introverts who may feel like they have to have all the information first, then have a plan, and KNOW what’s going to happen before they even start. Well let’s face it, the chances of all of these things lining up, and an introvert feeling motivated, and in the right mood every day from the start of a project to the end is pretty slim! Particularly when we’re talking about a horsemanship journey and did I mention “the journey is lifelong”.
The good news is: there can be a light at the end of the tunnel, if we are willing to feel a little more uncomfortable for a little or a lot longer. As introverts we need to embrace the uncomfortable feelings of doing things without knowing all the details, if we hope to progress. The uncomfortable feeling is our brains way of trying to keep us safe (Stephanie Burns has some excellent information, to learn more on this), our brain is doing its job. Just like your horse’s prey animal instincts are doing their job when he spooks at the rustle in the bushes. Sure in principle and while sitting comfortably reading, ‘Embrace the uncomfortable’ sounds like a great idea, but in practice it may not ‘feel good’ and often looks odd as we’re trying to figure things out. However, if we are EVER going to make progress we have to just get out there and do it. Now, let me be clear, I’m not suggesting that you go out to the barn and pull off your bridle, hop on without a saddle and see how things go, what I AM suggesting is that you actually GO to the barn. To get started, a strategy that can be successful is to schedule time to be with your horse and GO. Even if you’re not ‘in the mood’ to play, go anyway. Sit with your horse or groom them or sit on the other side of the fence and watch your horse. After all you are more likely to eventually play with your horse if he is at fingers distance than if he’s 10 miles down the road or even ‘all the way’ out in the backyard. In order to make progress you must make the time with your horse a priority. It is your time to do what YOU need with your horse, even if that means sitting next to him and talking about your challenging day at work/school or standing next to him and smelling the one and only smell that is YOUR horse (it’s the same smell that our non-horsey friends think is ‘stinky’, but those of us who have a love for horses - we know it is the BEST smell in the world :-). In fact by just showing up, you are already 80% down the road of success! So, when life starts to get in the way of your horsemanship and threatens to stop your progress in its tracks, remember 80% of success is just showing up, so GO!