7-17-2015 1-34-41 PMJourney: an act of traveling from one place to another; a long and often difficult process of personal change and development. Yes, a journey is a process. If we go on a journey and do not change, we become a nomad or a wanderer. If we change without going on a journey, we become an actor or an actress, that has been handed a script on the stage of life. We simply resemble a chameleon. However, if we choose the journey, and we experience change, our reality is transformation, or a shift. We get our wings! When the journey is about you and your horse, wing #1 is to get a connection with your horse, and wing #2 is to ask the question “What does my horse need?” I just returned from a twenty-four-hundred mile trip, which had a focus, a purpose, and resulted in several meaningful connections. However, along the way I had to deal with some detours, adverse weather conditions, and road construction. Many choices were made during my travels, and timing was a major part of the experience. It was worthwhile to be adaptable and flexible, and remain “in the moment.” 7-17-2015 1-34-49 PM As we journey with our horse, we come to realize that pressure motivates the horse, but it is the release of pressure that teaches the horse. You become aware of your horse’s mental and emotional state as you journey “in the moment.” You focus on getting the mental connection with your horse, because this connection gets him in a learning frame of mind. It also helps him to avoid becoming emotional. It is in this learning frame of mind that confidence is built in your horse. 7-17-2015 1-35-00 PMHave you considered your emotional fitness and the emotional fitness of your horse? When I took my training as an Animal B.E.S.T. practitioner, I came to know that a high percentage of horses “integrate” at Level One. “Integration” is the place where all the energy of the horse synchronizes into a healthy, focused place, and can be easily experienced by the rider. The healthy rider, in turn, is able to readily “become one” with the horse. However, there are horses that need Level Two, which is dealing with an emotional dynamic, in order to integrate well. An example of an emotional dynamic for a horse could be associated with the herd, environment, feed, pasture, water, human(s), training or tack, etc. Our horses actually are interested in increasing their emotional fitness and they invite us to journey in becoming more emotionally fit ourselves. Having relationships with other “horse people” is important. It is with these “NEIGHbors” you can ask questions, as well as share your thoughts and feelings. In these human connections, because of your horse connection, you get involved in the process as much as you choose. 7-17-2015 1-35-10 PMWe all get stuck from time to time. Interestingly, when we do get stuck, we seem to go backwards rather than forward. Each of us was designed to move (to journey), and change (transform). Don’t be afraid to admit that there may be a place or two where you are not moving forward in your connection with your horse. Go to work on the places in your life where you are stuck, so you can get unstuck and move forward. Enjoy the shift(s). In March of 2015, I wrote an article entitled, “H.E.L.P.” This is the key that changes the chain that has us stuck to the chain that pulls us out of our rut. We ALL need help from time to time! Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Seek out someone that knows something you don’t, otherwise, you’ll remain stuck, and may even become more discouraged or frustrated. Receiving meaningful help will allow you to make progress with your horse until you get stuck again, and you find yourself asking for help again. Being conscious and being present in the moment provide such fuel for you and your horse as you journey. For it is in the “being” that you become aware. In awareness, a space to take the time to consider opens up. It is in the “considering” that the Scripture says “the eyes of your understanding are opened.” Once you “understand”, you will be compelled to do something. And when “doing” happens as a result of “being”, rather than “being” happening out of “doing”, you are on an amazing journey! All of creation invites you to: THE JOURNEY! Your “NEIGHbor” Deb Kitchenmaster

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