Most of us have constant mental dialogue going on throughout our waking hours. It may be a gentle conversation, or it may be more obsessive and erratic from thinking too much all the time. I tend to find myself with way too much mental chatter too much of the time. For me, spending time with my Horses acts as a type of mediation that helps to calm my brain by sending chatter to the background.
I have noticed that when I carry this mental dialogue with me during my ride, it affects my Horses behavior. Mystic is highly intuitive and constantly reads my thoughts and intentions, sometimes even before I realize I have been distractedly thinking or feeling those thoughts. There have been times when I have brought irritation from a situation independent of my Horse to our ride, and as I relive the angst or anger while I was riding, Mystic will raise her head or abruptly change her rhythm as a reaction to this internal dialogue.
When I first moved to Northern California things did not go as well as I had predicted they would, my job did not meet my needs for financial support, and I gave in to tremendous fear about my financial strain. I live in fabulous Horse country with miles of trails everywhere so I rode regularly, however, Mystic would be extremely spooky resulting in split-second 180’s and I came off several times, one of which gave me a fracture in my sacrum delivering months of severe pain.
I could not understand why she was so extremely spooky, she is a very sensitive Arabian, and she had only been ridden about a year, but, after the move she was far more reactive and unreliable than she had been before. It finally occurred to me that I carried a body full of internal dialogue about my finances, with constant chatter about how afraid I was, how I didn’t seem to be able to fix it, afraid of was going to happen. Mystic did not know that I was terrified about my finances, she just knew I was terrified, and she acted out my fear by spooking at any and everything.
After this epiphany, I made a conscious intention to leave my money concerns in the house and just ride my Horse, and to remember to delight in spending time with her and all the amazing trails within walking distance. No, she was not suddenly bomb proof, but she settled amazingly. I became more grounded, and I again became aware of the privilege of being able to be astride this enchanting creature called Horse. And my Soul was once again satisfied that I had remembered my call to connect with the Spirit of my Horse.
When we calm our inner dialogue we become mentally, spiritually and emotionally more connected with our Horse. And while our problems do not magickally disappear, we become more grounded, our coping abilities improve, and our perspective opens. These revisions can lead us to answers that are elusive when we are overpowered by too much internal chatter. Our Horse invites us to use them as a medium to find the common ground of mental and emotional peace, they desire the same from us.
The next time you ride or interact with your Horse, experiment with this idea; change your thoughts that have emotions attached to those thoughts and watch for reactions from your Horse. If your Horse is reactive, resistant or uncertain, perhaps your thoughts are not consistent with your requests. Or, if you find yourself mid-ride with a horse that is wanting to stop and eat grass, change pace or resist cues, examine where your thoughts were. Were you too busy chatting with riding buddies or was your mind elsewhere? Your Horse may just be happy to be out on the trail and may carry on without you, literally or figuratively, either way you will miss the ride.