Once upon a time (last November), my horsey-mentor Robert (who is 80) set me up on a blind date. My first blind date might I add. And I was suddenly on said date, with no plan or direction. Also, with that sudden date-going-dilemma, I had very little time to set expectations (hmmm good thing or bad?).
While I think he’d been wanting to set me up like this for over a year, the plan for this introduction and chance at love didn’t really take shape until about two months later. Maybe.
“No time like the present, Erica!” he said as we walked down the rows of stalls.
“Time for what?” I asked with confusion. (Thinking; what now Robert? I swear the things you come up with).
“I’d like you to meet someone,” he said through a beaming grin.
He whipped open stall door number 6…and there was my DATE.
You guessed it – a 15.2hh bay/black mare, with ALL the mare stares!
And then the BEST part of the date:
As we (humans) stood by the open door, stall guard in between…
She took a step closer.
Sniffed the air between us.
She pinned her ears.
And bit my arm.
Then quickly darted back out of reach.
Awesome introduction, right?
Nice to meet you too (inside I was screaming; screw you too, ya I’m good, don’t need or want this either).
THE WORDS OF (DATE) DEATH
“Oh, that was a nice greeting! Give her a chance. But if you are over this, I understand,” Robert commented.
No- I’m definitely not going to be over this just yet. Maybe, we can have a second chance???
Think, Erica. What can you do?
I remember that horses don’t connect to humans automatically. We really have to give them all the right reasons to do so.
It’s not enough to say, “I want my horse to like me…I want my horse to trust and bond with me”.
All the “want” you can muster won’t grant this wish.
From my years of horse-life learnings I’ve come to believe this:
What am I doing that is causing my horse’s reaction?
What else in the environment might be influencing this emotional state and behavior?
Understanding these questions will help get you where you need to be (mentally) in order to meet your horse where they are at (energy state speaking.)
Horses may throw us through loops every now and then, but meh- it’s really not that big of a deal and worth passing on a love-letter-life.
After the initial hello the mare and I had a (partial) comeback. We spent a quiet 10 minutes together (in her stall) just being together. Of course, there was no looking at each other (we weren’t “there yet” – gotta laugh the mare-tendencies away…if you don’t you’ll go insane.) 🙂
Fast forward to now…
And (several) dates later, we CONNECT.
Even the hint of a dreamy relationship shines through.
All is well.
Even when all feels crazy.
When we’re open enough to chill and realize it- the horse will tell you what they need.
4 STEPS TO LAUNCH A DREAMY CONNECTED RELATIONSHIP
Let’s bring this back to how you can benefit from my blind date experience, shall we?
The next time you find yourself thinking, “WOW, WE REALLY NEED TO CONNECT HERE!?!?” and “WHAT NEXT?!?!?” try working through these steps I call…
My 4 C’s:
Literally. Take a deep breathe and take a minute (or 10) to collect yourself. Find clarity in your mind. Release all the busy thoughts we hold onto every minute because those are for the “real world”. Right now, just focus on being here, with your horse.
Horses and humans have their own set of rules on how to communicate with others. Take some time to learn what I call the Horse Communication Code Book to be a more effective talker. Be aware it takes two to have a meaningful conversation…listening is half of the job.
Focus on what your horse is doing right. Gratitude and positive thinking is the universal cure for unnecessary stress and let down.
Please don’t let a hiccup (like a first date wrecking ball) stop you from achieving your horsey-goals. Your horse needs you to show up today. And every other day too. When you do something with your horse (even teeny-tiny tasks), it adds up. It’s not a speed race, so run the turtle race, because spoiler alert: the turtle wins the race 🙂
For more tips & tricks on staying consistent, check out this post where I dive into my exact steps for building & keeping progress towards my goals.
In the comments below, I’d love to know:
Got any great blind date or first date stories with your horse (and by “great” I mean fun, laughable, inspiring, or just plain awful)?
To the miracle of patience and second (or third) chances,
P.S. If you liked this post & want to help me spread the word by using the links below to share it with your friends, I would greatly appreciate it! More to come on each of these C’s!