Energetic Incongruence - Listen here
:: A few years back, at the Equine Affaire, a horse Expo, I watched a well-known trainer explaining things to the riders from the horse’s point of view. I liked that. Later that afternoon, the same trainer was offering a ground demonstration with a horse in one of the mini arenas, and I decided to check that out as well.
Settling in on the bleachers, I noticed that the horse, a beautiful, chestnut QH, who had calmly walked in with his handler, was now looking concerned as his lead rope was handed over to the trainer. As the handler walked away the horse tensed.
:: As minutes ticked by I saw the horse’s tension rise. It began small, the body got stiff and the eye grew harder. Next, the horse started to move his feet around, turning his neck back looking for his handler.
:: At this point, I felt something was off. The trainer appeared lost in his own presentation while the horse was losing his footing. There seemed no rapport between horse and human.
:: As the horse got edgier and the neck taller, the trainer applied some basic groundwork, moving the horse’s feet this way and that way, to settle him down. But that exercise aggravated the horse more.
It all came together when the trainer said, “Hey buddy, slow down, I have a bad shoulder. I just took a painkiller, don't make this worse.”
:: The horse knew right away as the lead role was exchanged between the two men … the trainer was incongruent. He acted like a leader but he wasn’t one. The trainer was the wounded one, on top of it in an altered state, this felt terribly unsafe to the chestnut.
:: It shows us that the horse picked up on the incongruence right away. The audience gave the presenter the benefit of the doubt because it was someone well known.
:: Use your senses, your own body, as a tool. When your body says something is not right, it probably isn’t.
:: So often we look to the outside to provide us clarity when truly our body and the animals already know what is going on.
:: Trust yourself, trust the animal around you, and take action if possible and otherwise just give yourself a little pat on the back for your body and intuition informing you.
:: Often clients say, “I am trying to shield my animal from my feelings. I am worried about my animal being sick and I don’t want him to know that I am worried.” This is a noble idea, that you need to change your feelings, not be sad or mad or frustrated because your animal will be affected by it. But by hiding your feelings you become incongruent, you already know that. The neat thing is, unlike us, animals don’t judge our feelings. They are simply concerned when our feelings don’t match up with our actions.
:: The moral of the story is, don’t hide your feelings. Talk to your animal, be honest and real and your animal can handle it just fine.