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  • Writer's pictureGiulia Zanone Orth, MSc.

Do Something

I tell my children all the time, "How you do one thing is how you do everything."

What I mean is, our approach in doing any one thing is reflected in all that we do. Sometimes, though, we do nothing at all. Sometimes we know we have a problem—with a horse, with a behavioral issue, with a piece of tack—we know it, but we don't do anything except make up excuses. Can't ride because I have pain in my body. Can't ride because my horse has a pain in his body. Can't ride because I don't have enough time. Can't because of family commitments, lack of access to an arena, the weather, a flat tire. Sound familiar?

Delusions and Evasions

“Start now. Start where you are. Start with fear. Start with pain. Start with doubt. Start with hands shaking. Start with voice trembling but start. Start and don’t stop. Start where you are, with what you have. Just... start.” ― Ijeoma Umebinyuo

The issue with "can't this or that" is that you won't, and while you won't nothing much will change with the behavior problem, the horse problem, the tack problem except that you'll be letting it grow into a demon in your mind. Trust me, in the long run it's easier to just do something simple like take your horse out than battle internal demons.

Nobody's Perfect

“Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” ― Maya Angelou

To face your demons the first thing you need to do is open your eyes and see them. The next step is to reduce them to a manageable size. How would you help a horse overcome a fear? Incrementally. So you too can gain from taking small steps toward your biggest goals.

Break It Down

If you don't have time to ride for an hour, tell yourself that you just need to ride for nine minutes. If you or your horse are suffering from a painful condition that prevents you from riding, take your horse out for a hike or do some groundwork instead.

Once you establish a pattern for sharing positive experiences with your horse, the demons will disappear, you will have fun, and you'll strengthen the bond with your horse.

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