Friday, June 26, 2009


Don't you love when things click in your mind and you finally understand something you had been trying so long to understand? I'm not talking about understanding my wife, mind you. I don't know if that will ever click for me. But I or we get along great, Probably because I let her do what she wants and she lets me do what she wants to. :} How did I get on that? O Yeah, I was talking about things clicking in my mind. Its a wonder to me that I can watch how to supple my horse or get a lead change on a video demonstration or in my horsemanship class and not get it. Not quite understand what is required. But voila I got it yesterday. I had been working on other things and watched someone else demonstrate lead changes. so when I was riding Raven for just a wee bit yesterday, it was hot, I did some suppling exercises and then thought I will try a lead change from a walk. ( a lead refers to the front leg the horse is leading with in a canter. If I am going clockwise I want the horse in a right lead, vice versa for the left lead) I did as demonstrated and worked through some clumsiness on my part and got it. Then moved her up to a trot and did it, she began to move in to the lead I was asking for. Then I thought I am going to try a flying lead change (for those who don't know it is changing the lead of a horse without dropping down to a trot from a canter.) I did this by simply moving my seat and legs to the proper position for the intended lead (which is simply putting my right leg forward and left leg back for a right lead, this also changes my seat) and she went into the correct lead. I was so happy I did this a few more times on a figure eight pattern and then quit while I was ahead. Besides, time was running out and I needed to go do what Sharon wanted since she was home from work.
Bye the way we are starting to learn spanish so if you hear us talking a little wierd you know what we are doing. We have wanted to for a long time, but I just a bought 'Virtual Spanish' and we start today.
Anyway, that's all today.
Hope the light clicks for you.

Friday, June 19, 2009

too salty

I like salt on my food. However, too much salt and it ruins it. I was watching my granddaughter put salt on her potatoes the other day. She really didn't have good control of the shaker or didn't know how much salt was good enough. When she was done her taters looked like a snow capped mountain. She commenced to spreading it around and as I recall she ate the tater. The amount of salt she put would have made me spit out the tater faster than you can aagh!
Now, I realize she is just a kid and will learn that a little salt will do. But sometimes as an adult I too use too much salt.
Take for instance trying to help someone learn something new. I was teaching a person about horsemanship the other day. Now I know that with horses you have to take little steps and get them solid on the little steps before you can move on. For example, giving to pressure from the lead rope. This is so they learn to follow the 'feel' of the pressure in the direction you want them to go whether it is forward, back or sideways. But it has to be done in small doses. Too much will frustrate and confuse them. I had to learn this in my own horsemanship. I found that I wanted too much too soon, like wanting 3 or 4 steps when I was asking for the shoulder to move over rather than being satisfied with one. Eventually, I will want 3 or 4 steps or even a complete 360. But in the beginning it has to be small steps. I guess I have to learn this with people too. as with this person I was teaching the other day. It's like I want to pour as much as I can into the time I have with them, but I forget that most of the time less is more, otherwise it can overwhelm them and confusion and frustration sets in and you end up going backwards rather than forwards. With a horse you can tell this when by their body language, tail swishing, tenseness or stiffness in the neck and shoulders, head flailing. In a person, if they start crying or get angry its a pretty good bet they are on overload. I push too much sometimes thinking that I need to give more information when I really need to pay attention to the small things others tell me. In working with a horse, the lighter the feel that gets the requested response is the best. So if I can get the response I want with an ounce of pressure that is better than having to use a pound of pressure and it is easier for the horse and conducive to a more harmonious outcome. In the beginning though it might take more pressure to get the response you want. But start light, then keep upping the pressure til you get the desired response. Then start backing off the pressure from that point as they latch on to what you want. The same is true of people, as I am learning. It seems to me I am a little on the dense side because I should have known this a long time ago. It's odd that it has taken me working with horses to learn to be gentler with people.
It was actually my cousin Ken who helped me to see what I was doing. In my zeal to help people I pour on too much salt. That is my habit with anything. So I am learning that less is more in thise case. Maybe you are doing the same thing and that is why you are getting frustrated and wondering why things aren't working the way you would like. Try sprinkling less salt next time.

so until next time,
Please pass the salt.
God Bless and happy trails to you.