I think the most important thing I have learned while working with Plezant over the last two weeks is consistency. And with each passing day, working with him daily is really becoming a habit. A good habit! So I wanted to share with you how to be consistent with your horse, so you can feel the same way I do!
Consistency is Key
I’m going to start with the biggest takeaway first. Consistency is the key to success with your horse. Not only does the repetition help your horse, but it will help you too. And this doesn’t mean having marathon training sessions with your horse. No, it means just being deliberate with your time, and spending some of it with your horse every day.
Now I know for some, this isn’t really an option. Whether it’s because you don’t have your horse at home, or you are stuck at home away from your horse because of the current status of the world. But if you are able to get to your horse every day, even if it is only for 20 to 30 minutes a day, it will make a world of difference!
Take Plezant for example. This horse thrives on having a job. He seems to enjoy the consistency of work. So every day, I have been doing something with him. Whether we are walking down the road, working in the pasture, or even just working on standing tied. Each day I make it a point to do something with him, and I am noticing a difference. Not only in my horse, but in myself. He doesn’t look so big anymore! And I don’t feel intimidated at all because of his size.
He is a sweet, kind boy that thrives on having a job. And in that, he has provided me with some much needed confidence. And as my consistency continues, my confidence is growing. That’s a pretty cool thing to have happen.
Focusing on the Present
I am an over thinker. And because of this, my mind always tends to go to the what if end of the spectrum. But something that I have been working on is being in the moment with Plezant.
When I find myself thinking forward, or going to the worst case scenario, I tell myself to stop. And only think about the moment we are in, at the present time. And like the consistency of working with him, my brain is getting into the habit of living in the present only.
I’m not thinking about the future. I’m not reliving what happened yesterday. Nope. I only am focusing on the present moment. And I don’t let my brain wander into the territory of what if. Because if you are constantly worried, or thinking about the what ifs, you can’t be in the moment with your horse. And that’s where you need to be.
Practice Makes Perfect
It’s easy to say this stuff, but the only way it’s going to work is if you put it into practice. And that is exactly what I told myself in order to make it happen for me. The more you practice something, the better you will become. And this is applicable to working with your horse on the ground as well as getting into the saddle.
You have to do what is right for you and your horse. If that means perfecting your ground work, great. If that means perfecting your hunter course, that’s fine too. The biggest thing to remember is not to compare your progress with anyone else. Your progress is your progress. And as long as you are making progress, that’s all that matters.
Don’t get sucked in to comparing yourself to what others are doing. What they are doing doesn’t matter to you, or your horse. What does matter is that you are making progress. So the more you practice, the better your progress will be!
I love to give examples. So here is another example for you….
I’m not sure if you know that I have a YouTube channel. And I have a lot of videos with different DIY projects, and the happenings around the barn. Well on more than one occasion, I have had people tell me that I’m not a real equestrian because I never show myself riding my horses. Or how I should show myself jumping, riding, showing etc.
In the past, that really bothered me. Like I had to prove myself to complete strangers. And then I realized something. I don’t have to prove myself to anyone, especially some keyboard warrior spouting their venom from behind the safety of their computer screen. The only person I have to prove anything to is myself. And if I am happy with what I am doing, that is all that matters. Keep that in mind when you start comparing yourself to what you see others doing on social media.
Onto The Next
Since I have been working with Plezant consistently, every day for the past two weeks on the ground, now it’s time to take this to the next level, getting in the tack.
I mean I want to ride him, so now’s the time to do it. So from this point forward I will be riding Plezant. It’s the next logical step for me, so that’s what I will be doing. And not focusing on the what-ifs. Only being in the moment, and enjoying the progress of every moment I have with my horse.
How to Be Consistent with Your Horse
Hopefully this gives you some ideas of how you can be more consistent with your own progress with your horse. The first step is to get started. So what are you waiting for? Stop over thinking things, and go make some memories with your horse! And if you need a little encouragement, or ideas of where to start, why not start with one of my previous challenges?