Leading a colorful life is the theme of our Horse Hippie Fall Happy Box but some may ask, "What does it even mean to lead or live a colorful life?"
To me it means to be brave, wide open to possibility, willing to experience life fully, and to be yourself without caring what others think.
This is hard. Really hard. In a world that starts conditioning us how “to be” from an early age, being bold, messy, emotional, and fully alive, goes against those restraints. When we are loud we are shushed. When we are brave or we are bold we are criticized as being "too much".
It’s a tough row to hoe.
This concept is very close to your relationship with your horse and your riding. Every rider wants to feel brave in the saddle, to ride wide open (whatever that might mean to you), to be able to experience your horse fully, and to be able to not care what others think about how you do it.
Horses are also conditioned on how to “be” in their relationships with people through the type of training we use. They fear failure only because we have taught them to avoid punishment. They do more for us because they want a reward. It’s very black and white for them. Action/Reaction. There is no awareness of form, looks, or comparison to others. We are the ones that care about results, looks and awards.
For the last 10 years, when I could ride, I have been riding green horses. Due to financial reasons it is all I could afford. Many of them were not my own, but I was determined to ride so I found a way.
Green horses are wonderful but they do not necessarily encourage confidence in an older rider. As I have aged and my riding ability has diminished some, my confidence to handle typical green horse behavior (spooking, tripping, not understanding) has started to diminish as well. I didn’t have a choice about what I could ride, so I kept riding, but with every green horse misstep my fear increased and my confidence decreased.
Fast forward to now. I am still riding other people’s horses but I have been blessed with riding a “made” horse. Unfortunately, all the years of riding these greenies has carried over so now I overthink ….everything.
I have been conditioned by my past experiences to lack confidence in myself or to have confidence in my current horse. Let me assure you, he is a machine. He’s a point-and-shoot kind of guy. It’s me that’s in my head, not Carter. He just reacts to the present moment, with what I give him.
This ends up being interesting as he KNOWS what he’s supposed to do and how to do it correctly. So when I ask wrong, or question his knowledge, he gets a bit irritated. If he could talk he’d say, “Just hang on, I’ve got this.”
I am so honored to ride such an incredible horse, and I so WANT to be able to ride in a “colorful” way, so I am taking it back to basics, for me. To find my confidence, for him.
And that’s Okay. As long as I’m trying. As long as I’m willing. I will conquer my fear. I will find my bold “colors” and wear them.
It can be scary to be brave enough to make mistakes. To put yourself out there. To admit you need to change. People are quick to judge you. To criticize your efforts and magnify your shortcomings. Do. It. Anyway.
Do it for YOU.
We don’t grow if we aren’t challenged. So challenge yourself to step outside your comfort zone and live your boldest, most colorful life.
If you would like to see what’s in the colorful Horse Hippie Fall Happy Box….
Peace and good rides,