7 keys to Authenticity Workshop
Discover how the 7 chakras are directly related to your relationship with your horse.
Self Development and Spiritual Empowerment through the wisdom of horse!
Email: Jo and Kailie at firstname.lastname@example.org
When being with horses I am always looking for ways to connect more openly, authentically and congruently.
Many people are not aware of the learning that is on offer and the synergies that exist between them and their horse. A competitive mindset can lead people to focus primarily on winning. For me, I am looking for harmonious connections and relationships, and what is the same, how does life repeat itself here, what can I learn?
After decades of studying spirituality, psychology, alternative healing practices and self-development, I have found that the more I let go and focus my attention on nature, the closer I get to my horses.
My long-term interest in the psychology of the 7 chakras led me to the undeniable connections they presented between our interaction with horses and our unresolved, often unconscious, emotional blocks. The horse has the ability to help us resolve our blocked emotions and limiting beliefs, helping us reach our highest potential with them, and life.
The clinics that Holistic Equitation has been running over the last decade have ultimately been about relationship dynamics. We strive to find new and interesting ways to empower our clients. Understanding more about themselves and finding their pure essence, clients arrive with their mind and energy field strong, clear and open so the conversation they have with their horse flows with less disturbance.
The language of nature is presented to us through feelings, symbology and archetypes. Horses understand this language and are responding to us in every moment we are with them, whether we realize it or not. Are you listening?
Horses feel and interpret micro behaviours and feelings. They know more about our emotional blocks than we do. This is why they are brilliant teachers and healers. Their prey instincts demand that they stay attentive. It is the human that struggles to remain present, consistent and connected at all times.
The relationships and issues you have in your everyday life are all too often repeated in the relationship you have with your horse. The answers to these issues can be found in understanding the energy of your chakra fields.
Horses are constantly trying to reach out and help us through their actions, as undesirable as this can look at times. Many of us misinterpret the horse’s good intentions as a “bad” or “naughty” behaviour. The concept of good or bad does not exist in “horse language”. They are just being a horse.
There could be a number of things going on; they can be showing you a mirror of your own internal state, or perhaps releasing a blocked emotion; they can also be demonstrating their own weaknesses/issues in the hope that you will give them the guidance they need.
Our “7 Keys to Authenticity” program runs over 2 days. It involves learning the psychology of your energy system and how this interplays with your mindset, health and wellbeing, and in turn translates to the relationship dynamics you have your horse.
The first 3 Chakras that we examine are the Root, Sacral and Solar Plexus; they reflect much of your ability on the ground with your horse. We work through the psychology of these three energy fields and bring awareness to these parts of your body. In doing so, you are then able to present yourself more openly and authentically to the horse. These first 3 chakras connect to the relationship and training you have on the ground to help you build a stronger, safer, empowered relationship with your horse in preparation for safer more graceful riding.
As your skill develops, you will discover and learn how the Heart, Throat, Brow and Crown Chakras relate to your riding relationship, and finesse.
Below is “The 7 keys to Authenticity” program, outlining how we investigate the teachings of the chakras and their relationship to you and your horse. We offer training strategies and solutions based on the insights and blockages you discover. Participating in our program heightens awareness, deepens your connection, improves safety and brings insight into relationship dynamics in all aspects of your life.
Chakras and the Ground Relationship
Root/Base Chakra – I am
My attention needs to be on keeping myself grounded and focused, and to offer my horse my heart of hearts.
The Psychology of the Base Chakra:
Relates to Tribe – how I operate with a group and within the group/family.
- Tribal beliefs, values and superstitions
How has your past education or the horse tribe you associate with, influenced you – is it working and does it feel right?
What would your horse say if you asked it this question?
• Ability to manifest, nourish and birth ideas
How well do you creatively manifest with your horse, honour and nourish your ideas?
Are you leading the conversation, or is your horse?
• Staying focussed and grounded
Does your horse out-focus you, or are you a strong, grounded leader that continues to bring your horse back to a neutral place?
• Flexibility – not getting stuck in an unhelpful pattern
Can you let go of your ideas and do what is necessary for your horse, without falling back into unconscious, habitual patterns?
• Connection to earth, nature, rhythm and survival
Are you harmonious with your horse, or are there repeated episodes of chaos and fear?
• Our self-preservation
Are you a worrywart or catastrophizer, or do you feel emotionally strong and capable?
Do you know when to continue and when to quit?
Our self-preservation and Physical identity
Sacral Chakra – I Feel
My number one focus is on maintaining a safe, fun and mutually beneficial relationship with my horse.
The Psychology of the Sacral Chakra:
Relates to Relationship – how I operate one-to-one
• Physical pleasure/sensation, sensuality
Do you offer your horse physical touch in the form of massage, brushing, healing?
Horses are sensual creatures; do you reciprocate that sensuality, or is it all about the riding?
• Emotion – energy-in-motion
Are you able to control your emotions around your horse?
Are you easily drawn into the emotions of horses and other people?
• Addictions, weapons and jealousy
Do you resort to punishment when you think your horse is not obeying you?
Do you bring your addictive behaviours into your equine relationship, such as anger, sorrow, failure, greed, envy etc?
- Reliability with self and others
Can your horse depend on you to be reliable, and consistent in nature and requests, or are you easily distracted, unreliable and never quite know what it is you should do?
- Your need to control or be controlled
Do you micro-manage your horse and others, or do you allow others to control you?
Are you a strong, ethical leader that offers support, peace and grace, so that your horse enjoys being with you?
• Inner Stillness – balanced posture and emotions
Are you able to remain calm and offer your horse your inner calm, or are you bringing your last hour, day, week, decade into the conversation?
Are you physically balanced? Horses hate being off balance; a horse that is physically out of balance can soon become emotionally distraught.
Our self-gratification and emotional identity
Solar Plexus – I Do
I step into my personal power and know that I will make the right decisions with my horse
The Psychology of the Solar Plexus Chakra:
Relates to self – my dialogue, belief and relationship with self
• Internal power
Do you offer your horse a strong sense of self-belief and self-confidence or are you always one step behind, not always responding to the horse and feeling in charge of the situation?
• Self-control and personal will power
Are you able to control your emotions?
Do you have a strong will or can the horse and/or people easily talk you into things?
Can you remain true to your word?
• Boundaries and personal space
Are you good at setting boundaries with your horse and people, or does your horse walk all over you? Are you able to set clear boundaries with people? Often, people who were subjected to abuse, or inconsistent parenting as children, can struggle with setting boundaries.
- Acting on intuition
Intuition is a direct reflection of one’s self-esteem. People often mistake fear as intuition, which actually dis-empowers them. Intuition is what often saves our lives, especially with horses. Are you in tune with your horse, or do you put yourself at risk?
• My honour code with self and others
What code of honour are you able to offer your horse? Have you defined an honour code that you will never ever break, e.g. my horse must always be calmer and more peaceful after our interaction, and if I cannot offer this, I will not interact?
Our self-definition and ego identity
Chakras and the Riding Relationship
Heart Chakra – I Love
I hold my horse in my heart, and in doing so, stay committed to the present moment, not holding him or the relationship in the past.
The Psychology of the Heart Chakra
Relates to Love – my compassion for self and others
• Feelings of oneness, fluidity, harmony and absorption
Do you observe the mood of your horse once you mount? Has the horse changed? Are you responsible for the change in behaviour? Why would you ask your horse to move if it is not peaceful at the halt?
Can you bring your emotions and feelings into a place of neutrality, love and harmony so your horse feels and becomes this, absorbing the peacefulness you offer?
• Being present and neutral
Are you able to stay in the present time when riding, or do you time travel to past events, disassociate, and lose focus?
Are you able to offer emotional neutrality and maintain leadership when things become emotionally and physically uncomfortable?
Do you know when to quit?
• Heart space and connection to mindfulness
A clear heart and a mindful approach to riding deepen our connections. Are you riding from the integrity of your heart and mind or through your aids?
• Our wound file and illusions of what should have been
We all have wounds, most horse riders have a few more than others, as horse riding is a dangerous sport and most riders have hit the deck at some point in time. Our physical injuries linger in our wound file and can then hold us back emotionally when we ride with underlying fear. Are you allowing your wounds to control your riding relationship, holding you and your horse in the past?
• Healing, self-exploration and forgiveness
Are you a tolerant rider, forgiving of your miscommunication, or do you take your inability to communicate effectively out on your horse, blaming them instead of accepting responsibility for your inadequacies and accepting this as part of learning?
Perhaps you offer understanding, grace and forgiveness, communicating your inadequacies to your horse so that they understand that your intention always comes from a place of love and beauty.
Our self-acceptance and social identity
Throat – I Speak
I strive to offer the clearest commands and direction, listening and observing intently to my horse to ensure that the channels of communication are open and honourable.
The Psychology of the Throat Chakra
Relates to: Communication – How I speak and listen to others
• How I am heard
Does your horse listen to your instructions as a willing partner, or shut you out?
• Being able to speak without fear of being dominated
Are you able to stand up and be heard if your horse says no?
Are you in a connected riding relationship, or is your horse taking you for the ride?
Clear communication comes from a developed throat chakra; if you have been shut down or subjugated in any way you may find it hard to assert yourself.
• Integrity and honour of oneself
Horses are emotional button-pushers. They have the ability to push up against your emotional capacity, showing you where your weaknesses are and where your next self-development lesson needs to be.
• My ability to make wise choices and maintain my will
Horse riding is a multi-lifetime pursuit. Making the right choices often comes from experience, which can take years of practice in the saddle. However, what does not take years to learn is our ability to be ethical and honourable.
• Creative expression and resonance
How much fun do you have with your horse, or, should I say, how much fun does your horse have with you? Are you creating an environment that supports the emotional needs of your horse, or are you boring him to death?
Are you chasing ribbons to boost your sense of self worth, rather than finding the greater rewards of supporting and building your horse’s delicate mind? Be creative and have fun. We are only in this skin once.
Self-expression and creative identity
Brow – I See
I feel for my horse at all times and strive to make all interaction more beautiful, harmonious and balanced.
The Psychology of the Brow Chakra
Relates to Intuition and Imagination – How I see the world
• Your 6th sense and management of vision vs. illusions
Are you realistic about your equestrian endeavours? Are you fostering illusions based on the expectations of others rather than sticking to your own sense of what is right?
Are you able to follow your intuition and listen to the horse, and respond accordingly?
• Open mindedness, clear seeing or hallucination
Are you open to exploring new ideas, or are you stuck in old traditions that do not serve your horse?
Are you clear and concise, or are you sending mixed messages to your horse?
When we are present and open only truth can flow. Everything else is an Illusion.
• Synchronicity, coincidence and balance
Do you pay attention to synchronicities and coincidence? This is the universe speaking, asking you to pay attention right now, as something special and meaningful is about to transpire. Horses can collapse time and space, and offer us in depth insight to ourselves. When we truly listen, we truly can experience extraordinary things.
• Not being attached to the rational
Are you action based, systems oriented and methodical? This will only get you so far with a horse. When you incorporate more than just the rational worldview, balancing the masculine “doing” with the feminine approach of “being”, your horse will move you to places beyond expectation. Are you ready to let go and let the universe touch, heal and inspire you through the wisdom of horses?
• Nature of divine paradox
What feels right is normally wrong, and what is small is usually big when working with horses. It is the littlest things that make the biggest differences. The universe speaks and teaches in paradoxes. Put your attention on the small things and watch the big things grow.
Self-reflection and archetypal identity
Crown – I Know
I am a silent observer of myself. I recognize my limiting abilities and I endeavour to work on myself so I can be the best version of myself for my horse. We co-exist together as one.
The Psychology of the Crown Chakra
Relates to – Awareness – our sense of oneness
• Where our grace comes from
Do you resort to mechanical aids to get what you want, because you lack the timing, tolerance, patience and expertise to be asking these things of your horse, or are you more focussed on the relationship and emotional wellbeing of your horse? Count up the amount of aids you use on your horse, such as bits, whips, spurs, nosebands, martingales – each aid is a reflection of what is missing in your communication and relationship. Aids sit in the shadows, not in grace; they are born out of our need to control.
• Where our thoughts become conscious
Consciousness is in all matter, and the universe uses matter to hold up mirrors to give us the opportunity to examine, explore and evolve ourselves. Horses are highly reflective mirrors; they reflect our thoughts, feelings and emotions, which they express physically. The more we are in alignment with our highest purpose, the less there is for the horse to express, leaving the pure essence of your energy to be with the horse: free, flowing and fluid.
• Centre of mysticism
Your horse can be your spiritual master who can take you on a life-long, deeply spiritual journey of self-exploration.
• Spiritual beliefs and connection to universal energy
The horse is an intelligent, sentient being, full of exciting, buoyant energy, pure in essence and one with nature. The more we can be like them and let go of the confines of humanness, the more chance we have of experiencing those moments of euphoria we are all seeking.
If we bring our predatory visions, thoughts and actions to the horse, we will continue to distance ourselves from the ultimate gift they can offer – oneness.
• Faith and Gratitude
Heartfelt appreciation and gratitude exist with positive vibrations, bringing more of your desires into manifestation. Positivity cannot arise out of negativity. Have faith in the horse as a teacher and manifestation of universal laws. By paying attention to your horse you will find all the questions and answers you need to live a more empowered and harmonious life. Self knowledge and universal identity
Live simply, Love generously, Care deeply, Speak kindly ~ especially to your horse!
Article by: Jo Sheval.
Clinics run by: Jo Sheval and Kailie Nott.
Please email: email@example.com if you would like Jo and Kailie to run a “7 Keys to Authenticity” workshop with your clan or club. For horsey and non-horsey groups.