Editor’s Postcard: Can You Really See Your Horse?

Home » Blog » Articles » Horse Keeping

Let’s Stop Looking for Ourselves When We Look at Our Horse

We don’t see the world as it is, but rather as we are.

 Mary Pipher

It’s spring, my favorite time of year! Horses are shedding, foals are being born, and horse people are planning the fun we’ll have with our horses this year. While we mark our calendars and get our horses healthy and fit for trail riding, showing, or breeding it’s a great time to think about a new approach to take when spending time with our horses. 

As the above quote by Mary Pipher suggests, it’s difficult to experience anything in this world without putting our own point of view on it. 

Personal history is powerful. We react to the world by what we’ve faced in our past and what’s going on in our present. Humans are burdened by goals and dreams, something horses don’t bother with. They live in the moment and don’t spend their time dreaming about winning barrel races, dressage tests, or completing 100-mile endurance races.  

There’s an idea going around the horse world about how horses function as a “mirror” to their humans. While I do think horses can reflect our qualities (both good and bad) and seeing the truth of ourselves can be beneficial therapy for us, focusing on our own reflection may be a disservice to the horse. Let’s love horses for their unique and beautiful selves and stop turning them into people. 

Can we purely experience who the horse is? Can we stand back and observe, honestly, the motivations behind their behavior and not take it personally? Can we empathize with what they feel and “step into their shoes” to help them? Once we do this we might be surprised at how much happier and more cooperative they become. 

Every day, every ride is a new day with a horse. Let’s work towards listening to our horse’s needs today, not who they were yesterday or who we want them to be tomorrow. 

Enjoy our March/April issue with its focus on spring health. If you have any suggestions for our magazine’s content please contact me at [email protected]. We’re here to serve the Colorado horse community and would appreciate hearing from you! 

See this article in the March/April 2023 online edition:

March/April 2023

Select a list(s):
This article sponsored by:

Leave a Comment