No Woman is an Island….

Riding a horse is just one part of the whole kit and caboodle, and there is a whole lot more to it than just the hour or so a day you spend training your horse.

IMG_0262Mum taught me from a very young age that if you didn’t do the stuff yourself, you didn’t go out of home, and so I learnt the ins and outs of grooming, feeding, mucking out, cleaning, clipping, lunging, brushing, etc, etc, etc, the list goes on.

Sometimes this “lesson in independence” would go a little awry, and I will never forget the day I tried to give my shetland pony an all over body trim using the kitchen scissors. Gave new meaning to the word “chunk”!
When I arrived in Portugal, I for the first time, had the luxury of having a groom, but of course for the first 6 months I would not let them anywhere near my horse, and when I did occasionally arrive and the horse was saddled, I would usually inspect every inch, and sometimes even take the saddle off and put it on again myself, just in case 😉
Lately I have become a little more used to having my own personal strapper, and I must say that in a foreign country competing by myself, it is nice to have someone to help with that stuff so you can stress about all the other things like test riding, and staying on etc lol.
They say that no woman is an island, and my lesson is that while no woman is an island it is important to never become a dependant state either, and while a good support team is vital, never let yourself become dependant on others for anything.
It is very wise to let people help, but always make sure you know yourself how to do things, and check, no matter how must you trust in your team, that the things are done the way you like them, or the way that is best for your horse.
There is no point sliding off under the horse’s tummy, and then blaming someone else for not doing the girth up tight enough. Make sure that you are methodical enough in your daily routine that those things are checked, as the only one who will be truly affected by a slight overlook is YOU!
Don’t try to be an island, but don’t be a sinking ship either, and make sure you know your horse, and most of all, make sure your horse knows that you are keeping an extra eye on everything that happens to him.
Watch him, learn from the way he reacts to others, and always be aware if his reaction changes, and think about what may have caused these changes.
Be on the ball, and on the ground, and your horse will thank you, and when he does, you will understand him enough to know it!!!!!


New events coming! For more information contact me via warneyswhip@gmail.com
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All For One and One For All

On my first big trip away with Batialo I realised the importance of a team.

20140701-193109-70269725.jpgInvited to take part in the British Dressage Convention at the end of 2013, getting Batialo over to the UK from Portugal was just the beginning.

My groom Valdeni drove the long haul in just three days, my mum flew out from Australia, and my trainer Miguel Ralao was on the ground to help me focus on my job in the BIG arena!

I wrote an article for Eurodressage about what it takes to ride in a big atmosphere, and the article “Art vs War” was one of my most popular to date.

I think this is mostly because people could relate, they could understand that the thing we love most to do, is also the thing that makes us strong, that builds as and defines us.

However, we can’t do it alone.

I needed my team at that convention, just as I needed my Batialo, and I know that if I want to chase my dreams I will need all the support I can get.

You might also realise that you have a team you can rely on, or you might be thinking, I HAVE NOONE!!

Well, luckily for you, in today’s world of social media, you can create your own team over the internet.

Write to me, write to someone you know, go online and watch the world’s best, or listen to a top training talk about the perfect circle, or keeping your horse in balance.

Video yourself and show your neighbour, or me, or someone you trust to give you honest feedback.

I have to admit I love my time alone with Batialo, when it is just me and him, and noone else in the world exists, but don’t be afraid to admit that sometimes you need help, or encouragement, or even just someone to tell your story to.

Eventually you might earn the respect of people you respect in return, and create links with the right trainers, the right brands, the right team of people to help you on your journey.

Metaphorical Tattoos… What Are You With Forever?

Tattoos are often used as a stamp of some sort of independence, or significance, or boredom, and are a mark that is intended to stay on the skin forever.

photo-3Just like this pigment inserted into the punctures of our skin, we also have metaphorical tattoos that we carry with us, that define who we are, and what we present to the world.

I started thinking about this recently, after I began listening to a Portuguese artist with a song called “tatuagens” (tattoos).

The title got me thinking about what marks you might carry with you, that will be with you forever?

Aside from any visual tattoos you may have had printed on your skin, are there internal or mental tattoos that you know you hold on to, and will never give up?

I’m stubborn, and often impatient, and it’s a tattoo that is part genetic and part my own personality, and while this tattoo will always be a part of me, I can choose whether or not to let it rule my life.

My instinct will always tell me to rush, or stick to what I think I know instead of understanding others, and while this tattoo may sometimes get me places more quickly, will I be able to appreciate those places once I get there?

If my tattoo always has me thinking one step ahead, how do I recognise when I’ve made the right step, and be rewarded by the joy of knowing I made it.

For you, your stamp might be shyness, or overconfidence, and like all metaphorical tattoos, both can be seen as good and bad.

Shyness can be disguised as politeness, but if you live your life polite but never revealing yourself, or learning from your mistakes, you might never step outside polite and into something more real and rewarding.

The tattoo of overconfidence can be fun for a while, but when people start to think of you as rude, or demanding, you know you’ve crossed the line.

So how do we learn what part of our tattoos to let shine, and what part to tone down or even remove.

A violent tattoo is one that should be quickly booked in for laser, as should a pitying tattoo, or one of low self respect.

If you suffer from a tattoo that you feel is not helpful in your life, whether it be the boys name you had tattooed on your stomach one druncken night, or the life determining sense of being that you carry with you, there is always a solution.

Thanks to some advanced laser treatment, tattoos are no longer as permanent as they once were, and the long lasting metaphorical tattoos that we are branded with can also be scrubbed off with the right dose of mental training.

First is to discover what tattoo you have, why it is no longer beautiful on you, and work towards finding an alternative that fits you better.

If you are shy don’t barge up to strangers, start by talking more in comfortable surroundings with people that make you feel valued.

If you are overconfident, or sometimes too much, begin by not saying everything that comes into your head the moment you think it, and try to reserve some things just for yourself!

Never change who you are to please others, but any tattoo that gets in the way of your own happiness, is one that perhaps you should consider lasering off, even if just a little!


Just released Core Training For Equestrians, CHECK IT OUT…

How do I feel…TODAY??!!!

Ten years ago I broke both my hips, and I won’t ever forget it.

20140617-162320-59000018.jpgRiding everyday now I have constant pain that won’t go, and that I have learned to work around.
The problem we face, or most of us face, is learning to put our memories behind us and start again.
Learning to tell ourselves, that the me I am today, is not the same me that I had yesterday, and therefore the pains that were there before, might not be anything to do with what I am feeling now, or what I will feel tomorrow.
This is true of everything in life.
If we are always expecting things to happen, we create a channel that might not only allow those things to happen, but also prevent the good things from happening also.
A person can become so used to feeling down, that they don’t realise the times when they are feeling good.
A person can hate the rain so much, that they miss the beauty of it, or that wonderful smell right before it, when the world seems fresh and new.
Sometimes the ability to clear our minds, and think on the moment, is just the cure we need.
Imagine you have a headache, and you say to your friend “I have a headache!”.
An hour later, your friend turns to you and says, “Do you still leave a headache?”
You suddenly think, “Do I” and realise you do, but if the friend had not asked, would you have remembered?, and if you didn’t remember, would the headache have possibly become part of the past?
How do we train ourselves not to be influenced by what went before, and to just feel what is happening to us, right this very instant?
How do I retrain my brain to forget what happened to my hip, and work everyday with the body I have now?
Then, instead of thinking how is my sore hip? I can think how am I feeling today? And therefore open up the amazing possibility that perhaps I won’t notice my hip at all.
If your horse is scared of the chair, and you come out on the arena, and remember his reaction, and so wait for him to react, he is of course going to remember also, and so be scared again.
If you can remove that thought, or that memory from your head, and enter the arena fresh, perhaps he will also forget about the chair, that was so threatening yesterday.

As a rider we learn to use our bodies in order to influence our horse, and we can of course be put into positions that may cause us some aches and pains.
The problem is when we know a pain is there, and we enter the arena thinking about the pain and how it was yesterday, then we already set up our brain to focus on that pain, and therefore make it loud.
20140617-163404-59644512.jpgTraining ourselves to start each day fresh, each moment, each feeling, each thought, takes a lot of practice, and isn’t something that just happens.
Our natural process is to associate everything with how we felt, instead of how we are feeling.
Learning to ride out onto the arena each day and ask, “What do I feel today?”, without any thoughts, or memories, or connotations, is very difficult to do.
Applying this in our lives, takes practice, but it might just allow us to see people as they are, not how we expect them to be.
Then, eventually, perhaps we can be the person we are today, and not the person we think we should be.


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For the a list of articles please visit my section in Eurodressage.

 

Never say NEVER!!

I left Australia four years ago, to find mum a horse, and I stayed when I found mine! I share a secret with Batialo that no-one else knows, and when people ask how I think of the ideas for my articles, well he tells me ;).

20140617-164133-60093250.jpgI was told once that I was just a girl writing about her ponies, and perhaps I am, but aren’t we all?

I write not as an authority, but as someone on a journey, and people on a similar journey can therefore relate, because we all share the same challenges, the same highs and lows.

If anyone ever tells you that chasing something is easy, they lied.

If anyone tells you you can have it all, perhaps they just aimed low.

People can always give you their opinion, and show you why something won’t work, won’t happen, or isn’t realistic, and it’s usually these people who commend themselves on doing nothing, cause they do it so well!

In teaching yourself to never give up, you must also learn the art of acknowledging when you need help, and not seeing this as a failure, but as a bridge in helping you get to where you want to be.

If you can’t learn to adjust your dreams, or seek help with them, you will not succeed, because the world and the people, and the horses, and the everything, is always changing.

You never know what you will be tomorrow, so you just have to make the best of what you can do today.

People can spend forever trying to make sense of the world, and the people in it, but why do that when there is so much to love in all the things that don’t make sense!

Today I had a great conversation with a chain-smoking yoga instructor, and then found out one of the most wonderful people I have met overcame 99% negative stats to fulfil her life dream.

Don’t give up!

Why Wait?

“Good things come to those who wait”

20140617-183811-67091143.jpgNOT TRUE!

This is just a line parents use on kids that won’t stop asking questions.

Unfortunately, we don’t live in a world of random icecream deliveries, and no matter how long you wait you have to actually go to the store and pay for that piece of dairy goodness.

A few years ago, I spend most of the day waiting for the worst to happen.

That was a low point. Until one-day a very wise woman asked me if there really wasn’t something out there worth chasing.

The pursuit of happiness seemed like a start, and after that initial decision to be happy I soon invented new and far greater dreams.

I told mum that I would find a horse, and be the best in the world.

Today I realised just how far I’ve come, when yet again someone questioned my ability, and whether or not my dreams are realistic.

Regardless of whether I am on track to reach my goal, the fact that someone is questioning me, means at the very least that I’m being noticed.

Told again that my horse is too good for me, I was asked that perhaps it would be better if I were the owner of an Olympic horse, and I could make lots of money…

I said, what is money without a dream?

Even if I never make it, the pursuit of our dreams, is what it’s really all about, and considering I’ve been the only rider of my horse since he was four I must have done something right.

In life there are people who doubt us, but what this person didn’t realise is that every time sometimes tells me I can’t, I get that bit more determined to prove them wrong!

I was once told that my articles were pretty much a girl talking about her ponies, and when I had four people write to me yesterday to tell me how much they appreciate reading my work, I wondered what made them relate to what I say.

I am not in any stretch of the imagination the rider that say Carl Hester is, nor am I as inspirational as Nelson Mandela, or as poetic as  EE Cummings, but one thing I am is honest.

People relate and understand my articles, because I tell it like it is, and I admit that I screw myself up into a ball in the shoulder-in, and I bounce about and stick my tongue out in the sitting trot but, like them, I am willing to search for a new and better way to understand my horse, and for him to understand me!

Doubt is what ruins people. Don’t let others put doubt in your head.

If you doubt that you are good enough, you will never be. If you doubt that you can be there for someone else, you won’t be. Just decide what you want, what you will be, and be it.

Whether you want to be the best rider in the world, or the best rider in your one-horse stable, pick a goal and stick to it.

Even if you have a trainer, video yourself, and watch it, and ask yourself if you can do better.

If you see something that your trainer isn’t telling you, don’t just assume he must know better, ask him WHY he isn’t picking up on it.

Perhaps it is for your benefit, but perhaps it is because he thought you didn’t know enough, or cared enough, to fix it!

If you don’t have a dream yourself, make it your goal to help the dreams of others, and then take pride in the fact that you were part of something bigger than yourself.

So, here is the deepest secret nobody knows, here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud……

Don’t wait for someone to tell you what you can be, don’t doubt the thing that you want the most, pursue your own happiness above all else, because you can’t make anyone else happy, until you can be happy within yourself! :):)

Don’t wait for the icecream truck, go and get the icecream yourself 😉

PYRO FREE Sporty Dressage Lusitano born 2007

HANNOVERIAN MARE 6 Y.O. TALENT FOR JUMPING AND DRESSAGE

Who am I?

Everyone seems to be searching to find out who they are, as if it’s some sort of challenge.

20140617-183811-67091560.jpgThe truth is, we never know who anyone is, because we ourselves change constantly.

If you have never surprised, doubted, wondered, scared, or offended yourself, then you don’t go outside enough.

No wonder other people shock us, when we more often than not shock ourselves.

The person you were yesterday, will not be the person you are tomorrow, and the people you met in the past, cannot determine who you’ll be in the future.

If someone puts you down, or criticises you, they will not exist to you in a later moment, so why let them affect the person you choose to be?

If we spend too much time trying to figure out who we are, we might miss the moments that make us, and perhaps miss the chance to become something or someone greater.

Instead of asking who we are, just decide who you want to be, and be it.

Decide who you want to be around, and be around those people.

Decide what mood you will be in, and put yourself in that mood.

Sounds simple, but turning a negative thought into a positive one is extremely difficult, and I envy those people who have mastered the ability to select the good thoughts, and throw out the bad.

When we choose what food to eat, or what clothes to wear, we typically, if given the choice, throw out the bad or rotten or worn out.

So why then do we allow the bad thoughts to remain in our heads.

I used to wonder when I was little if being a bad person was a choice, or if some people were just popped out of the womb as “ready made criminals”.

Most likely all of us have elements of good and bad inherent in our genetics, and it’s circumstance that allow them to take over.

However, the most crucial element is choice, and while a lot of our lives our out of our control, the decision of how those events define us, is up to us.

We cannot regret what we did, how we acted, because each lesson we learn is one we carry with us forever, putting one more piece into the puzzle of “who we are”.

With horses, I am always surprised when people take their partner for granted, or expect them to behave in a particular way, because just like people, horses are unpredictable.

You can learn all about them, and love them, and even trust them completely, but they will, and always will be, free to do as their own mind decides, and the minute they lose their own personality, the fun of training is gone.

This song I like because it made me think….

Wake me up when it’s all over, when I’m wiser and I’m older.

Do we ever become wise? Or do we just continue to add up our moments of trials and error.

Life is a game of thought, the older we get, the more accustomed we become to the thoughts we have….

20140617-183811-67091821.jpgCan we predict our thoughts? No

But can we change them for the better? ALWAYS !!

Layers – Onion/Tomato…

With some people, the onion metaphor rings true, and you feel like the more you know them, the more layers you discover.

Others, are more like tomatoes, and if you peel back the skin you just end up with a big red sploggy mess that’s hard to manage.

20140617-183811-67091760.jpgThe onion people are the ones that teach us more about ourselves, because as we peel back their layers, so too do we reveal our own secrets.

Sometimes it takes an onion with courage, to tell another onion that it is ok to reveal a layer hidden, or perhaps two onions when put together find the confidence to reveal themselves to one another.

The tomatoes wish they were onions, and try to disguise themselves as such by adding fake layers, typically through chemical enhancement or deception.

On the other hand, some onions try to disguise themselves as tomatoes, and pretend to be less than they are.

This is usually because a tomato who very much wished they were an onion, put the onion down, and made them feel like they were nothing more than a tomato.

If you know an onion  that has happened to, remind them of what makes them special, that they are unique, that they have layers, and that the fascinating part about our world is that by discovering the layers of other people we discover who we are.

Horses too have layers, and while a horse may seem like a simple being, eat, sleep, poop etc, they in fact take in a lot more than most non horsey people would give them credit for.

As rider it’s our job to peel back the layers of our horses, and learn about them, so that we can help them to understand what we are asking.

Only when we understand the layers of our horse, can we unlock the key to his training success.

Many people now term me the Lusitano girl, because of course I ride two Lusitanos.

20140617-183811-67091891.jpgIn actual fact, I grew up riding warmbloods, and my favorite horse in history was a 14 hand high warmblood pony cross named Zen, who loved me just as much as I loved him.

Ask any of the top riders, judges, spectators, trainers, and they will tell you the same golden truth…

“A top horse, is a top horse, regardless of his breed.”

20140617-183811-67091821.jpgIt may be the son of a stock horse, crossed with an arab, but if it can move, and has the mind to try, then a good rider will peel back the layers, and produce something magical.

 

Technology….What is it to you?

Sometimes I wonder if technology really makes things faster, particularly when trying to figure out how to turn on the plasma tv, or getting mad at the microwave that won’t stop beeping at me….The food is ready, I’ve got the message..thanks!

20140617-183811-67091950.jpgTechnology for sure has made certain things easier, and I’m really not sure that I could be so far from home if I couldn’t “Skype ” my mum every night, and every morning.

She tells me of a time when you had to send letters by ship, and it could take up to 6 weeks to get your message across the Atlantic.

In that respect, technology has made my desire to ride horses overseas, far more accessible, and a lot less lonely.

Certified “Web Trainer” my mum is able to watch YouTube clips of me the same day I took the video, and I can reflect immediately on my training floors before facing the day ahead.

Technology has been the most help in the world of medicine, and after reading an article about a woman whose bionic arm can actually sense and feel what she is touching, I felt in awe of what research in these areas can produce.

The people who complain the most about technology, are usually the first to check the weather forecast, and while I do think that it makes kids anti-social, it also connects them in other less face to face, but perhaps far more communicative, ways.

We wonder now how we lived without Facebook, and admit it has gone a long way to abolish the token catch up conversation at parties, as now, the minute you arrive, you already know exactly where everyone is at, and what they are doing.

The older generation say they could live without technology, and then the power goes out, and I get a phone call from a pretty distressed relative who hasn’t been able to have her morning cup of tea!

So what is technology to you? Is it the latest game your addicted to? Is it your means of communicating with a long away home? Is it the annoying beep on the microwave oven, or the pale square-headed child you are raising who only talks in cyber speak?

What would your day be without it? Would you have more friends, or less friends, and would the depth of this friendship be deeper?

As a journalist, I certainly am not going to be a hero, and say I could live without it. If my email is down for half an hour i’m banging my head against the wall.

Watching Downton Abby, and I am reminded of the world those “old people” used to live in, when technology was still “those waves wafting about”, that Maggie Smith was so deathly scared of, ;).

I wonder, could we live in that world today?

20140617-171301-61981537.jpgIn the horse world technology has made little difference. It’s not like in swimming, where a split second touch monitor can determine the gold and silver medal, and no matter how many state of the art gadgets are created, our sport remains in the eye of the beholder.

UNTIL recently, when a panel was created to supervise the judging system, able to instantly replay a movement to check that the judge had in fact seen that the horse was late in the change, or stepped back in the halt.

Is this a good thing? Does it make judges more honest, or less likely to go with their gut and be the bold outlier?

Relationships….

The most challenging relationship we will ever have…Is the one we have with ourselves!

20140617-203708-74228021.jpgIt is by far the most difficult to understand, and just when you think you’ve got it all figured out, something happens and you react completely differently to the way you thought you would!

It’s funny that  we grow to “realise that nothing is forever”, and that “things can happen when we least expect it”, and yet still, even with this knowledge, we are always left saying…

“Why me? or “How could this possibly be happening?”

The people around us are just as complex as we are, yet somehow, though different relationships, we come to learn which people we can trust and which ones we can’t…

Which is more than we can say for our own emotions!

Some relationships are built on dependency, with one person lesser than the other.

This used to be predominantly the male,  but post 1950 and the rise of womans rights, and now it’s just as likely to be the woman in charge.

I was reminded of this today when I saw a woman walking the dog, with the husband walking 5 steps behind with the poo bag….fantastic!;)

The most destructive type of relationship you can have with a person, is jealousy.

I was envious of my sister my entire life, and when I finally talked to her about it, turns out she had always felt the same toward me.

Unfortunately we let this attitude rule our relationship, and we still hope that one day we can find the calm from within ourselves to make peace when we are together.

To be jealous of someone, is to lack the ability to see yourself as anything better, and I have found in life that the best thing you can hope to do is to always turn jealousy or envy, into admiration!

By admiring people we allow ourselves the chance to grow, not through imitation, but through leadership.

And not only that, but we leave room for the possibility that somewhere, someone else may just be admiring us!

Jealousy in a love relationship, simply means a lack of trust, and by the time jealousy becomes an issue, there is a whole lot more going on underneath signaling danger!

The other major threat to a relationship is judgement, and again the person we affect most with our own judgement is ourselves.

Until we learn to accept our own weaknesses, we will never forgive those in others.

I  have talked about happiness, and really the key to happiness is not just about your mind-set, but also about making the necessary adjustment in your attitude.

Positivity, they say, is a person who can see a glass of water and say “the glass is half full”, but I believe it to be far more complex!

It’s really about saying, “yes, the glass is half empty, it could have more water in it for sure, but I’m going to be happy with the amount I’ve got, and make the most I can out of it”! 😉

It’s about turning a “thunderstorm”, into a “fascinating climatic experience”, or a “bloody weak cup of coffee” into a “relaxing way to warm up”, lol!

It’s about making that small adjustment, to move yourself from one state into another.

To let go of fear, and embrace good sense and caution.

Eliminated jealousy, but admire as much as you can.

Don’t judge, but instead learnt to accept.

Destroy loneliness, by finding strength in independence.

And if all else fails, trust in the relationship you have with your animals 😉

Our relationship with horses is special, because it’s ours, and it is even.

He doesn’t judge us, or question us, and while he may frustrate us, he can teach us a lot about ourselves, and our ability to work through the tough issues.

20140617-183818-67098487.jpgA dog has an owner, a chief, a leader.

A cat has a slave, preferably more than one.

But a horse….has a partner, and we are lucky to share that partnership from on top of his back ;)!

 

Happiness….

20140617-183818-67098276.jpgWhen we are young, happiness is easy!

Give us an icecream, and you can pretty much be assured we will be realitively pleased with the world.

As we grow up, we learn to doubt, fear, suppress, and take on board all the things that can pull us away from happiness.

Other people can do it through sheer spite or jealously, the world can do it through ill-fortune, ill-health, or plain bad luck….

Or, and most importantly, we can do it, by allowing ourselves to be weighed down by all the hundreds of millions of reasons why we may not be happy.

They say the “grass is always greener on the other side of the fence”, and no matter who you are, or what you have, you will always search for more.

Searcing for more, or trying to achieve greatness, is fine, in fact it’s healthy!

But saying to yourself, I am not good enough, I am not worthy, or strong, or well enough, or I will never be as good as someone else, and you will make that your reality.

I’m not saying this because I am one of those lucky people who can see the bright side in everything.

I’m saying this because for 10 years I had severe depression, and I know now, that NO-ONE, and nothing, could have saved me, but me.

Happiness, in the end, is a state of mind, and it took a lot of determination, and will power, to say “I can pull myself out of it”!

I did, in the end, and now I can see the good in most things, mostly  because  for a long time I could only see the bad.

However, you can not tell a person who is down, or beaten, or depressed, to just “be happy”, or to see the bright side, it is something they have to pull out from within themselves.

Luckily now, I thank my mum everyday, that I am living my dream riding horses, and if I never win a single test, I am just so happy everytime I enter the stable, and see my beautiful horses, and the look on their face when they see me :)!

Happiness in dressage is not in winning, but in teaching your horse the flying change, and his proud expression when he knows he did it right!

Watching on a stormy day as the world drifts away from you, and in an arena full of chaos, you and your horse work in your own bubble.

And luckily for me, in addition to my horses, if you give me an icecream, i’m pretty much all set!!

 

Happiness

Everybody wants it, but it’s not so easy to get,

If you don’t appreciate it, you haven’t been hurt yet.

It comes and goes like the seasons, lifts us up when we are down,

you won’t know how much you miss it, until it’s no longer around.

Bad people try to buy it, or steal it from their friends,

but in the end they’ll loose out, cause this is one thing that depends…

On forgiveness, trust and kindness, on going after the things that count,

Being good to others, is really what it’s all about.

Some don’t know they have it, until it goes away,

and will try to recreate it, with each new passing day.

If you think you cannot get it, try to share your neighbors pile,

It may not be the real thing, but it will keep you for a while.

It will come when you least expect it, although it may not stay so long,

The sorrow that follows this feeling, only much us that more strong.

Enjoy it when you have it, and care for those that don’t,

But always believe “I will be happy”, and never say “I won’t”.

People…What type of person are you?

When I was young I found old people fascinating.

20140617-183817-67097552.jpgThey don’t know how to update their status, or tweet, or even use capslock on the computer, but they know more than we will ever know.

They have seen the world before us, lived through war, survived famine, and in today’s world of texting your emotions, and “beware of the neighbour”, I envy their sense of community.

Rich people, can become ruled by that title, and if you count the number of rich people you know on your fingers, then put the finger down if they are unhappy, you can usually end up with a fist.

Poor people, get lost in our consumer society, or perhaps they lose the will to care.

I once gave a sandwich, (a good one!), to a homeless man on the street, and he threw it at me and swore in Russian.

Yes, I felt pity for him, but I meant nothing by it, and ended up feeling far worse, and minus one sandwich.

Some people can dream, and laugh and smile, no matter how bad things get, and I envy those people, as I am a little bit of a stresser ;).

I have learnt however, to take in the good people, and block out the bad.

In a society who cares far too much about what other people think, it’s up to you to decide what you take to heart and what you don’t.

For sure ,people are funny creatures….

They put each other down, abuse each other, and sometimes forget that we are all in it together.

Perhaps that is why so many people seek animal companionship, cause an animal will never judge or humiliate you.

They won’t comment on what you’re wearing or how deathly awful your hair looks, or your voice sounds.

They seek your approval and nothing more, and will do anything to get it.

20140617-183817-67097171.jpgIf only people were as simple!

Instead of asking yourself what type of person you are…ask yourself what type of person you want to be?

A lot can change in the space of a month, a year…..four months 😉

YOU CAN….be a dreamer

and if you can’t be, don’t tell the dreamers they can’t either!

Addictions….

20140617-183816-67096226.jpgA wise woman once told me that everyone is addicted to something….

Some have the more well known addictions, like smoking or alcohol, while others addictions can be less obvious, some good and others bad.

Some people are addicted to reading, some researching, some can’t live without caffeine, and others can’t concentrate until they have had that morning cup of tea.

20140617-183815-67095256.jpgPerhaps some people become addicted to other people, and become so much a part of someone else they forget who they are themselves.
I remember that after more than 60 years of marriage my grandparents had become practically a two person in one package, and when my grandpa left first, my grandma lost a sense of what she was really doing here.

20140617-183814-67094492.jpgI’m addicted to running, not because I think I am unfit, but because it is the one time in my life that I feel no-one can touch me.

Ridiculous, as of course I am not so fast that I am invincible, yet (lol), but something about it makes me feel free.

20140617-183814-67094192.jpgThe same goes when I am on my horse, and my usual very busy mind becomes quiet.
I have often been told that people are surprised by how concentrated I am on the horse, given my rather uncalm personality, but perhaps I have just found the thing that I was meant to do.

20140617-183813-67093674.jpgSo then, what is your addiction? What can’t you live without?

And what is it about being on top of a horse, that you cannot live without?

I know I couldn’t!

Memories

Everyday, every second, we see and hear things that remind us of different times in our lives, different people, different events.

20140617-183813-67093474.jpgWhen I see a father kiss his son, I am reminded how much I miss my father…

When I see an old couple walking hand in hand, I’m reminded of my grandparents…

When I see love and admiration on someone’s face, I think of all the times I have seen that or felt that in my life.

Songs in particular, remind us of different people, or certain feelings, and while some songs may make you feel all warm and fuzzy, others have you rushing madly for the OFF switch on the radio!

Some of mine include…

What songs mean what to you?

Or what is the hardest thing for you to look at and not be taken back to a place that you remember with perfect clarity?

Memories are what we take will us everywhere we go, in everything we do.

Perhaps that is why I enjoy horse riding so much, because for the 60 or so minutes everyday on my horse, I am not thinking about the past or even the future, and I can just be PRESENT!

They say only a surfer knows the feeling, but I think a horse rider has a fair idea :)!

Horses also have memories, and will never forget being treated unfairly, or with force!

I wondered if the horse, when in total concentration with his rider, can also block out the world, and I believe this to be absolutely true.

Someone tried to tell me that a horse doesn’t remember, that if you do the perfect flying change, and then stop after the diagonal and give him a sugar lump (my treat of choice) he will not recognise that the reward was for the change.

20140617-183812-67092708.jpgHow come then, after just two times of doing this, my horse new to stop immediately after a good change and turn his head round to receive his sweet reward, but after a bad change he knew not to bother?

Stare into the eyes of your horse, and ask yourself if he remembers you, the eyes never lie.

The same as with the people we let into our lives 🙂

Did you miss the sneak peak of Anja Beran?

You can never go back….

You can forgive but not forget…You can never go home again…You can’t teach an old dog new tricks….

20140617-183811-67091143.jpgYou cannot change the past, only work for a brighter future!

We all know the sayings, and we are often reminded of their importance in our lives.

I was reminded when I returned home to Australia for christmas. My mum is and will always be the most important person in the world to me, but I realised that home truly is in my case “Where the horse is”, and that Australia no longer felt like the place where I belong.

Perhaps you really can’t ever go home again, or perhaps in creating a new home, a part of you changes and you no longer fit into the gap that you once did.

I think it is true you never forget, and even the people who I have forgiven throughout my life, a trust once lost is lost forever.

Luckily this is not true of horses, and while I believe that an animal can lose its trust in us, we are blessed in that if we work hard enough, in time they will forgive us.

When I was 5 my grandfather told me to throw my cat into the lake. So I did.

Of course the cat no longer came to me, and it took nearly three months of constant apologising until finally the cat returned to lie peacefully at the foot of my bed during the night.

Luckily horses are smart, and they can trust in the ones they know have faith and trust in them.

My pony would not let my father catch him in a 4×3 metre arena, but I could limbo under his belly and sit on him while he slept.

One thing I know for sure, is that you can’t change the past, and dwelling on it does no good at all.

A bad ride, is one less bad ride, and we must then focus our attention on the stand out ride we will have tomorrow!

20140617-183823-67103514.jpgAs for the future of our sport, I think Anja Beran has some stand out philosophies…

Sometimes we can’t go back, but we can sure try to capture what the great classical masters created over a century ago!

Sneak Peak of Anja Article- Full copy in EQUINE EXCELLENCE printed Australian Equestrian Magazine