When I was a kid and had my first horse (and didn’t know what I was doing) I had a neighbor who would sometimes give me pointers. A few of her remarks really stuck with me – trite as they were. One of her favorites was”familiar breeds content,” and I have definitely found that one is true with horses. But she also once said to me, “Once is a mistake, twice is an accident and three times is a habit.”
On Tuesday Steen and I took our third consecutive jaunt around the corn fields. He was worlds calmer than the last time, even seeming to relax and grow curious a few times. He was still in a bit of a hurry to get back and we still had a few directional disagreements, but we resolved these with very little difficulty and, in fact, to anyone watching they were probably nearly invisible.
My latest riding tidbit from my recent reading is the idea of the “center” as a concept more than physical place, and using my gravity and balance to help with Steen’s gravity and balance. So far, I’m amazed how far I can take this concept and how much little adjustments in how I think of my body translate into Steen and his willingness/ability to do what I ask.
So, I’m hoping this means calm, enjoyable rides away from home are well on their way to becoming habitual.