Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Choosing A Path To Your End Result

This topic is something that I wanted to speak about because there are so many ways to get where your going. An example of this could be. If I wanted to go to Bangor from my place, there are so many routes I could take to get there. In some cases the fastest way may not be the fastest way today. Meaning maybe there is an accident that is holding up traffic. If I wanted to just go a certain way because I knew the route better, this may not be a wise choice if maybe there was a bad snow storm. Then it might be better to stick to the main roads. In many cases you could be going along and have to detour for road construction or many other reasons.

This can be the same when working with our horses. It is true that we need a very clear understanding of where we want to go, or our end result. But we should do proper evaluations so we pick a good path to get there. We may find ourselves making a detour because something came up and we need to go a different route. Or the horse needs to understand something else first before they can understand the next part.

I say this because many people go at working with a horse in a planned out route. Using a method they learned from someone else. Even very well known trainers. Sometimes the timing is off and we need to do something else first in order for us to continue. Many methods are broken down so that if you follow it and make sure you're at a reasonable place to move on to the next step, it can be a clear path. There will always be something somewhere that will make you detour. It will either be a horse that is struggling to get the lesson, or maybe a person missing out on a proper evaluation and not being aware of the horses needs. If we miss out on the horses needs then they miss out on understanding us do to them not wanting to except us. We need to ask our questions at the best possible time. In order to do this we must fulfill the horses needs and only ask the questions they can answer.

I to have developed a program and method that I use when working with horses. I follow a path that I've learned to be most productive. But there are times I have to back up because the horse showed me something that needs more or individual attention before I go any further. Sometimes its in me, sometimes its in the horse. Either way the horse always shows me what it is.

When working with students I like to show them the way I do it. Making sure they know that they need to develop their own way. Sometimes what we think is the best way, may not be the best way for us at this time. Sure we can practice anything long enough and well enough to get good at it. But just like the detours in our travels, or with our horses. There may be a detour we need to take in order to get there. We all have limitations. Sometimes they are emotional, physical, mental, even spiritual. We need to take them into consideration and develop them accordingly in order to progress. If we play to our strengths and work on our weaknesses, we can make progress. The horse can tell us these things as well if we listen to them.

In short the point I'm trying to make is, "Be sure to carefully take care of your horses needs before asking them to fulfill yours" Its easy enough to do but sometimes gets forgotten when we are focused on other things. Also, "Be honest with yourself and your limitations so you don't try something you are not ready for" We need to progress in an orderly fashion. We may need to work on our weaknesses first before moving on.

Thank you for reading and I hope this helps and makes sense to everyone. As always this is an interactive Blog, so feel free to comment or ask questions.


  1. Great post, Ron! I find I have a really hard time figuring out what my strengths are (or if I even have any). I'm better at identifying my weaknesses and limitations. My lack of confidence often makes me hesitant and unsure, which I know my horse senses. Sometimes I think I allow my perceived (or valid)limitations to hinder my ability to understand my horse and move forward.

    1. Your not alone Robin. Many of us allow our own thoughts to disrupt our path. Giving in to fear of not being good enough. This is part of why its important to be honest with ourselves. Also a good reason why we need to listen to our horse. They will tell us. All we need to do is ask a few simple questions, and wait for the answer. They will be very honest with you. We just need to be able to hear the reply. I know if I find myself thinking like this, I work on confidence building. Simple things like doing something that I find easy and works. If I can find a way to work it into what I'm feeling negative about I will. An example of this could be. If I was asking a horse to walk onto a trailer and my usual process was giving me trouble. I would take the horse away from the trailer and work on simple go forward cues. I would do this in as many ways as I could that would build my confidence and the horses. Once we are both recharged with "I Can Energy" we go back and ask for a go forward cue right at the entrance of the trailer. Or in some cases work my way closer a little at a time. This is just an example of course. this can be applied to almost every area of our lives.

      If you have a hard time finding strengths then you have to get better at asking and answering the question, "What can I do right now that will work" this is a strength, if you have an answer to it. Even if you have to back up and detour. If we stay and fight to try and make something work that doesn't work, we create animosity and discontent. You will feel it for your horse and your horse will feel it for you. If we step back and say what isn't working? In the examples case, not going forward when asked. Now I can detour and step back and work on a strength's that both me and the horse has by taking him somewhere that he will go forward when I ask. So now instead of fighting and learning to hate each other, we are working on common ground and learning to appreciate each other. I call this redirect and reward. Its much better than showing them who's boss.