5 Chronic Equestrian Complaints & How to Overcome ThemJun 13, 2023
The top 5 equestrian complaints I hear on repeat are as follows:
1. I feel anxious about riding/showing
2. I don't like how my horse is being treated/cared for (in many variations)
3. I can't find the time/energy/resources for my horse passion
4. My family/friends/co-workers/spouse don't understand my horse interest.
5. My horse isn't sound/making progress/the type I need right now.
I'll start by saying that each of these complaints are usually backed up with facts and lots of good data to support the client's discomfort! My coaching clients aren't average--they're intelligent and motivated and they've given their situation a lot of thought before coming to me! By the time we coach together, they are explaining real complaints that deserve attention. AND...within a few sessions, clients also experience a shift to know what they once thought of as a problem is actually just a space where growth is available to them.
Here's why a complaint is actually a FABULOUS thing to have:
A chronic complaint is just your brain's way of calling attention to something you have yet to make a decision about that allows you to either:
a) embrace your situation fully
b) change it
What's your chronic complaint? Is it one of the 5 or do you have another? (I'd love to help and you can reach out directly to [email protected] if you'd like some support.)
Here is how you can overcome each of the top 5 if they apply to you. These are the short answers. For more personalized help, you can schedule a free 1:1 consult with me.
1. FEELING ANXIOUS
If you feel anxious and it's holding you back from enjoying the riding or showing you want to be doing, here's the secret I'm going to let you in on: anxious is a FEELING that you generate in your mind. When you regularly think thoughts they become beliefs. And if you're believing things that generate anxiety or fear, you will default to feeling anxious in the settings that provoke those thoughts for you. The good news is that if that is the kind of anxiousness you are experiencing, mindset work will absolutely help you. Most clients feel a shift after their very first coaching session.
2. HORSE CARE
If you don't like how your horse is being cared for/trained or the facility in which they are living, it's critical to know that YOU get to decide your own level of tolerance for care. You get to communicate your horse's needs for them. If you've exhausted your options in your current care/boarding/training situation, and you are still talking about it as a problem (You know...when you chat with your BFF about the struggles?), then you get to make a powerful decision about which obstacles you are committed to overcoming on a regular basis and which ones you want to eliminate permanently. This might include moving to a different facility.
Notice if you'd rather keep complaining than doing something different. That's normal for a human brain! Humans would rather deal with an uncomfortable "known" than a potentially comfortable "unknown". That's how human brains are wired.
The one thing that's certain in life is that if you are alive, you will be challenged. And problems are meant to be solved. So decide which problems are worth solving on a regular basis.
Maybe you're happy to solve the problem of money and you'll spend more to have your horses in a different program. Or maybe money isn't the problem you want to solve but distance is do-able for you and you choose a new location that includes a longer drive.
Whatever you choose, you get to love.
And by the way, you can also choose to love what already is and drop your complaint! You don't always need to change your situation to love it! That's mindset work as well.
You create and allocate resources based on your priorities. So, if your current resources aren't cutting it, you get to decide what's out of alignment.
Is it that horses aren't as big of a priority for you anymore or is it that you want to figure out a way to create the resources that help you enjoy your horse(s) again?
This is when honesty really counts! You have an opportunity to come clean with yourself and know that the only person whose opinion matters in "this" particular case is yours. The capacity to know your truth and love your rationale for it is critical to moving forward in an intentional way.
If you don't spend the time making a solid decision from a place of certainty, you will undoubtedly act from past patterns and habits and if you do that, you'll continue to create unconscious results that don't align with the way you are viewing yourself in. your future and you'll remain dissatisfied--and keep your chronic complaint.
How you choose to show up for your life and your interests actually has nothing to do with what other people think; but we've been socially conditioned to sell out on ourselves when we don't get external approval.
So if you're seeking support from the people you value in your life, you're normal! Don't judge!
When a client presents with an unsupportive family member, friend or work situation, we dig right into boundaries and love. What if you didn't need the external approval of others to freely enjoy your life experiences? What if it didn't have to be a fight and argument or a defensive case? When you have identified your "clean why" for enjoying your "stable life" and integrating it into your life outside of the saddle, the support you experience from others won't make or break your experience.
As mirrors...and the ultimate puzzles at times, horses give us our greatest opportunities for personal growth. The next time your chronic complaint centers on something going on with your horse--whether it's a veterinary dilemma or a question of talent or behavior, ask yourself this question and listen to what comes up for YOU:
Who do I want to be in this situation?
The work you do to identify HOW you want to show up and what you want to FEEL is profoundly life changing because it directs you at the most powerful level--your self concept--how you SEE your SELF. As you identify who you want to be you can put it into practice and move through the obstacle becoming the person you envision yourself to be. It's an incredible opportunity for growth even when it's uncomfortable.
If you feel like you've had a chronic complaint for ages and you just can't seem to get past it, we can come up with options you might never have thought of in coaching and I would love to help you!
Looking for a way to connect with other equestrians who are building confidence, resilience and crushing their goals in life AND at the barn? Come hang out with us.
Get the workbook that helps you make regret free decisions--faster.
Receive instant access (download directly to your device) AND get on my mailing list to receive the latest news and updates.
Don't worry, your information will not be shared.
We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.