25. HORSES & OUR FOUNDATIONAL BELIEFS
To do anything with any horse there is the over-riding belief out there that you must have a method to achieve a result. It is this belief that causes so much frustration from horses across the board and the breakdown of horse and rider relationships over time.
Horse riding is a partnership, a team.
You need to be a true team player.
If you approach teamwork by methods of manipulating others in the team, attempting to dominate the other members, acting quietly behind the team members backs to get what you want without telling them, say one thing and do another to get advantage, you may get the physical thing you want however you have betrayed the relationship with your team members and they will feel completely disrespected and betrayed, abused, used, and at their first opportunity fight back against you, eventually causing a blow up and a breakdown of the team.
It is no different with horses. If you play mind games, manipulate them, dominate them, force or even gently coerce them into doing what you want, you may achieve the performance of what you want initially, but the horse will feel completely disrespected and betrayed, abused, used, and at their first opportunity fight back against you more and more.
The only way to be a true team player and to achieve a sustainable and functional partnership longterm which improves and grows stronger over time, is to be up front, fair, true, respectful and, in an up front and true way, to negotiate for an outcome desired in a fair way which shows the partner respect and freedom.
Any manipulation, underhandedness, disrespect, coercion, other than being completely up front with any partner will only achieve resentment & frustration which will build up and grow until there is no partnership at all.
Here's the thing too, a person who does this with horses will invariably also do this in their wider relationships with people and in a team. Horses are great for acting as a mirror to our own underlying beliefs
The belief being we must fearfully control others to get what we want. The actual truth being, loving others and being fair and respectful to our partners or team members, despite their actions, creates a partner who will always want to work with you, in whatever direction you may go, confidently and powerfully.
Allow a free spirit, trust love is more powerful than anything available to us on this earth and the key to any longterm sustainable effective partnership.