Positive Headspace – The Mindful Equestrian

This blog series is about the balance of enjoyment, improvement and Mindfulness that is needed for the average equestrian to be able to reach their full potential. Novice or a professional, here are some of the essential things that you can learn in any equestrian career.

Today’s topic is about the purpose of a positive headspace; it is not just about being mindful; it is about the emotional grip of your surroundings and your capability to adjust.

With the last blog “time well spent” being about the time we spend with our horses and being able to adapt our wants and needs to help our horse learn and to grow as a team, today’s topic is just off centre from that. With our mindset being one of the most critical parts of handling a horse, however, it isn’t always that simple.

We have all been there. We have all been humiliated at ourselves. Going to the stables wanting to use our horse to blow off steam, only to find there also having a

Richard and Tolly

bad day and that our attitude is going to be a part of the “untraining” I mentioned In the last blog.

But yet most the time we don’t realise till it is too late, we end up feeling worse then we did when we came in, not only because it wasn’t the beautiful ride we envisioned, but we are upset at ourselves for letting our bad day ruin what could have been a valuable time with our horse.

Now how do we stop this? It is simple, but only if you can catch yourself, yes it would be all sunshine and lollipops if we could catch ourselves early and spend some time in the paddock with our horse, sitting there and breathing them in, I myself find this to be the best way to combat stress. Still, in the world of fast pace and time restraints, it’s easy to push through and force ourselves into situations our mind is not mentally ready for. So let us do the next best thing, stop!

In my line of work, I am with the horses day in and day out, and when I am not, I am coaching others how to be there best selves both in the saddle and mentally. I have chosen this line of work because I love it, seeing a horse grow or even a horse rider combination is what makes me smile, it makes my soul happy. But that does not mean I don’t come into circumstances that course my discomfort, as unfortunately, that is just a part of life.

I have been there in my youth were my emotions got the better of me, and even in this last year I let a devilish woman bring me down immensely and have it affect my work, but like any healing mind or body, it takes time and maturing.

Now I have a much better grip over my mindset then I did when I was younger, and even on my bad days I can be mindful enough to handle a horse, but what about the days I’m not? What about the days you are not? On these days, if you have pushed your self to lunge, ride or groundwork your horse and you’re no longer able to keep yourself together without hindering the relationship with your horse, you are better off finishing. Stop right there, mid-ride dismount sit down and breath.

Let your self take a moment to breathe and take In your surroundings. Allow your person to take in the fantastic, majestic animal you see in front of you

because you know its not there fault. Regardless of what silly actions they were doing, it is a coping mechanism for the attitude and behaviour you are displaying. Suppose you can’t find your centre enough to get on or continue, then, don’t.

Most of us were brought up with the mind frame of “winning” but unfortunately not every battle is worth fighting and if we are not in the right mind frame out argument to win could do more harm then good.

Please take a moment to yourself, finish and try again with a better mindset because when I say not every hour in the saddle is wasted. I mean it, but some times the lessons are for us to learn, not the horse.

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