I went for an impromtu trip to Penticton this weekend with the hopes of getting a new-to-me car…spurred on by the discomfort of driving my truck with two awkward dogs and no A/C. I make more frequent 7.5 hour trips to the interior in the summer and it just isn’t appealing to stack us in there so often! The trip was a bust car-wise, a learning lesson in dealing with dealerships, and a great opportunity to visit with family friends of Jeff’s who have welcomed me in to the “family”.
Out of our random talks while I was there we got to talking about sheep herding and how much easier it was to use two types of dogs (Huntaways and Collies) rather than let ego say Collies are the only way. The moral of the story was if you’ve got access to many tools, why not make your life easier. Why let ego get in the way and follow the path of “I am better if I work harder”? Where did this idea of hard work get pushed past the limit into a place where many of us feel the need to work so long and so much just to justify ourselves? Maybe it’s just me, but it seems like it’s easy to get sucked into the idea of “I worked xx number of hours this week so I’d like a pat on the back please”. At least I know I’m not completely alone, those friends find themselves in that trap sometimes too.
I was lucky enough this morning to have the opportunity to use the lesson right away. I was booked to go out and work on a mare in the valley with chronic issues. Having moved at the beginning of the month and then being away for the last two days I was mentally prepared, but didn’t have all my gear together in one place. I debated not driving up to the barn to get my massage tool (which I use for extra leverage since horses outweigh me 10:1 or more generally) or stopping at the studio to grab my aromatherapy kit. But a little voice in the back of my head said “why wouldn’t you take all of your available tools?”, especially knowing that this mare would tower over me. That little voice reminded me that my knuckles would feel better if they weren’t exfoliated against horse hair for an hour if the whole session consisted of massage, so I made both stops and went on my way.
Once I got there I found myself working on a lovely mare who was very sensitive, so my massage tool wasn’t even necessary; but I was so glad I had my aromatherapy kit with me to make up a liniment for her (along with magnets, exercises, skeletal manipulation, energy work, and some light massage) and I recognized so clearly in that session that brute force and pushing on and working harder weren’t going to get me anywhere. That for some horses more pressure/force is better…but for others, less pressure is so much better, so much more therapeutic.
You really can’t beat such a clear message. Just as working with that mare was refreshing for how clearly communicative she was with me, the reminder to stop pushing all the time was welcomed. Now it’s time to step back and check in with my own beast…my body…and listen to what it’s actually saying. Time to take off some of that pressure and work smarter not harder. Work more creatively and less forcefully. Time to listen to those animal friends of mine.
Lots of Love!