I am very happy to say that all this rain has brought an excitement for spring, new beginnings and change. I have been working with Junior under saddle for almost one year and the journey with him has been full of personal growth. We worked together, compromised, stood our ground, laughed a lot, let go of old patterns and learned new skills. I learned how to slow down, listen, take time to really see what is in front of me and to be flexible.
My invitation to you is to release old patterns that may not fit anymore. I am here along with my herd to help you discover new patterns.
How many of us look for what we call "true" connections? This could be person to person or person to animal connections. It can be scary to reach out and look for connections and even down right paralyzing for some while others thrive on being a social butterfly. I will admit that shaking hands and starting conversation with new people is not comfortable for me. I actually find it mentally exhausting, my husband loves it and can walk into a room full of people he does not know and leave with a group of new friends. That is a true talent... or is it?
I have been working with horses for over 30 years and have learned that if I do not truly connect with a horse in an authentic way, they will not trust me or want to be with me. In fact, they will push me around and call my bluff when I try to assert myself. Much like mingling in a crowd, who wants to hang out with the insecure person that hides behind sunglasses? If you truly want to connect with someone you need to come forward with confidence and authenticity ( Check out my previous blog about being authentic). People and animals will call your bluff if you enter into a relationship without being your true self. True connections are rooted deep in being authentic in all areas of your life.
Here is some homework for you to try on yourself. The next conversation you have, work on eye contact, keep your mind quiet, be present, offer more of yourself in the conversation and respond in a genuine way to what you hear. After you try this, ask yourself if you saw anything different in yourself or the person you are talking to. Of course, I would love to have you out to the farm and we can work next to our horses. They never lie and push you to be your best in an authentic state.
Resist judging yourself and others, we are all growing and learning.
See you at the farm and remember to laugh often. Life is way too short to be so serious :)
Fear steals our joy, it keeps us from exploring new stories and holds us back from growing. What is behind the fear that makes us hold onto it so tightly? It reminds me of standing on a high dive looking into the water below. I wanted so badly to jump yet my toes gripped that board so tightly. Once I jumped it was amazingly fun and I ran around to do it again and again. If I never would have jumped then I never would have experienced the fun.
Pictured to the left is Gus. He is full of joy and life. He wants so badly for us to join him. He has so much to teach us and if we simply relax and allow him to, we can see the world like it is brand new. Trust, we need to trust and release fear in order to join him. The unknown can be a scary place, who knows what will happen.
Gus and I have been together for over a year and we have been learning a lot about each other. It has been a joyful and scary journey at times. He loves to bound through the arena with a giggly light heart. He loves to run free and see what new things are all around him. We have been working on being mindful when we are together. I don't always enjoy running so freely on his back it can be a bit unsettling. We have been working on trust and how to give and receive during our time together. I trust that he will not bound around the arena and he trusts that I will not take up the reigns and put pressure on his mouth. After a few conversations about this concept it was time to release our fears together. I won't pull the reigns and he won't bound around the arena.
So now I am sitting on Gus and finding my space and starting a conversation. What will I choose... stay on the diving board or jump off?
JUMP OFF! Yes, I sure did. It was amazing in our new story, I felt like Rose on the front of the Titantic! We walked and ran around the arena together with grace and in such a mindful space. I did not pick up the reigns once to remind him and he did not have to remind me to relax and trust him. What an amazing lesson he taught me that day (a week ago). Release your fears so you can experience your new story.
What fears in your life are robbing you of joy or holding you back?
I would love to meet you and introduce you to Gus and the rest of my team. Together we can help you jump off that high dive.
We all have stories both old and new. It is easy to get "stuck" in your old story and have a hard time beginning a new story. I am happy to share a little about myself and how I began to create my new story.
I grew up on the east coast and have always been with horses since I was around 8. I loved everything about them, the smell, sound, grace and how the whole world melted away when I was with them. I spent every moment I could beside horses. It was not until I was older that I began to understand why I loved them so much. They were always honest, forgiving and open with me. I could fail and not be afraid of being judged based on what I or others considered failure.
I spent a large majority of my time traveling on the show circuit and bringing home trophies, medals and ribbons. I was blessed to have my own horse later in my career and our friendship was strong. He carried me through some very hard times and celebrated some amazing times with me. He was my rock, my friend and my constant in the storms of being a teenager.
Fast forward to now, 35 years later. I am still working with horses and always worked with horses even after my horse was given to my friend. I got married in 96 and we moved to Sonoma in 2003. I quickly began working with local rescue organizations to help with horses that needed extra attention. This is when I saw my new story. I had been stuck in my old story of who horses were to me when I was showing and teaching on the east coast. I am not sure when I was able to turn the page in my book and begin writing this new story. It took years, hardship, doubt and a dose of fear in order for me to take the big step into this place of change. What I knew for certain is that I was sick, tired and unhappy in the place I was. I had to give myself permission to release my old story, patterns and behaviors in order to experience something new.
My new story was waiting. Once I took the first step and allowed myself to explore new things, everything became so clear and amazing. I can only explain it as if I were shedding tons of heavy weights tied to me. I felt lighter, healthier, happier and relieved. Why did I wait so long to do this? Fear, doubt, not knowing? Lack of knowledge is a major reason many people are content to stay in their unhappy rut. It is not their fault, they may not recognize it or be ready for the change. This is why I started Hoof Beats Stables years ago. My horses all have old stories and are now living in their new stories. We are here to help people find their new stories, the change they are searching for in order to walk in happiness and good health. My horses and I work closely with you to explore where you are now and where you want to be in your new story. It is a beautiful journey of life, wisdom and grace. I truly love the clients that I work with and seeing them reach for their dreams is a blessing.
I invite you to come meet my horses, myself and our farm. firstname.lastname@example.org
Feel free to contact me anytime to inquire more about my programs and how we can work together to create the best life you have ever had.
What does it mean to be mindful? In a season of people rushing around, parties and shopping it is easy to see people not being mindful. Mindfulness - Taking the time to pause and reflect prior to reacting. Pausing for that extra moment so you present yourself as authentic and honestly as you can. Mindfulness can be defined with many words. How would you define being mindful?
By taking a moment or pausing you give yourself time to process information. It is far better to pause than to present yourself in a false light or find your self lying to others and yourself. When you present anything other than authenticity it breaks down trust and character. To think that others do not detect your lies and false front is foolish. If you find it difficult or even scary to be authentic, slow down, breathe and then move forward.
Our horses are here to help give you the life skills necessary to create healthy relationships. Horses and life coaching go hand in hand. Horses work off of the energy we present to them. This is how they survive in a herd. They are unable to lie, hide feelings or present one thing and mean another. When we enter into their space our energy causes them to react to us. It truly is beautiful to see the conversation, healing and wisdom that is displayed between horse and human.
We invite you to experience our horses in a honest, unique and dynamic way. Enter into the new year mindfully and authentically.
We are all in a season of change during our lives. Change involves many stages and it can certainly be uncomfortable or just plain awful at times. It is important to remember that without change our lives remain static. Think about water that never moves... it starts to stink and grow fungus. It is similar with people. I like to call it seasons of change because it is similar to the seasons of weather. Sometimes it is gray and dreary and other times it is fresh and new. You are not alone in your season of change. Look around for those who have their hand out to help you. It is okay to ask for or accept help. We are here to help you find clarity and direction, our horses are amazing healers and provide authentic feedback to help support you.
Hoof Beats is very proud to be a certified Skyhorse Ranch, all of our instructors are certified and trained to provide you with a well rounded and enriching experience with the horses. We are extending our hand to anyone that needs a little assistance in their time of change. With a kind heart and gentle approach we will help you find the clarity to move forward with confidence.
Equine Guided Education is a beautiful way to connect with horses, find healing and clarity in your life. You do not need to have any horse experience to participate. Change is not easy but it can yield some pretty amazing transformations when you allow to move through you. Start this new year with clarity, confidence and offer your authentic self to others without reservation.
What a beautiful time of the year here at the farm. The vineyards are changing colors and the light seems to make everything glow. I am so thankful to be able to care for these majestic horses. Each one has been entrusted to me for their lifetime. Each one has given so much to myself and everyone that has been, is and will be a part of Hoof Beats Stables. They have taught many how to trust, let go, be still, love, be loved, love ourselves, and countless other life lessons. I am thankful to everyone that has left their fingerprints on my band of horses. You all have enriched their lives and mine.
This is a season of change, the leaves on the trees display a glorious array of colors as they enter into a new season We too, are entering into a new season or a point of change. Change is sometimes very scary yet it brings about newness, hope and life. As we celebrate this Thanksgiving day, we remember how much has been given to us to make us who we are today and who we will become tomorrow. We will continue to reveal our season of change in upcoming blogs. Please join our conversations and share what you are thankful for.
Art Grunig had another full horsemanship class at Hoof Beats Stables on Saturday. Art offers equine bodywork and training for horses at his ranch. He works on our horses and most recently, offers horsemanship classes at Hoof beats Stables. His teachings are to help you better understand your horse and the partnership you have with them.
Art is truly a master at understanding, training and caring for horses. We are very honored to have him at Hoof Beats.
If you are having trouble connecting with your horse, need assistance with training your horse or want to expand your skills, this class is for you. Please check out our Events page for future class dates.
In a world of false fronts and constant influences to "become" someone that "fits in", how can we be our authentic "true" selves. When you turn down the noise that clutters your mind who's voice is constant, real, authentic? The search for something bigger than ourselves can be interesting, fun and enlightening. People place others in charge of giving them significance, peace, healing or value. It is a burden to place such expectations on another person and usually they will come up short, disappoint or altogether fail to pass the test. Let's examine this concept together, nobody said it would be easy but the results will astound you. The first step is the hardest. We all want to be accepted, loved and feel beautiful. With the holidays upon us the marketing for miracles in a bottle promise you one or more of these things. This life change is not sold in a bottle, cream or potion. All you need to do is have an open mind and heart. Are you listening? Do you really want to burden others in order to find peace, love and self love? Isn't it time change out of those silly clothes that cover up who you really are. Their are others that need you to show up, "all in" not some in and some out. How can you can start presenting yourself authentically with confidence and release others you have placed in a role that they can not possibly live up to. Our team is ready to meet you just where you are.
Hey there horse enthusiasts! I am Jenny Alphin, A Therapeutic Recreation Specialist and Certified Equine Guided Educator. I am located in the stunning Sonoma Valley surrounded by views as far as the eye can see.