Your success or failure in horsemanship is largely determined by your habits.
You'll never become an expert at anything by simply reading a book. Athletes don't become elite competitors by reading about their sport. They practice their sport with great dedication.
Improving your skills for you and your horse is no different. You have to practice. In practice, we recognize habits that everyone falls prey to sometimes. This experience encourages you to find better ways to cope with life's challenges so you can better recognize and avoid these pitfalls in the future. It's all about growing, improving, and striving to become a little better than you were yesterday.
Horses learn from repetition, too. Repetition is the way we help them remember the task we are asking of them. What you will discover though is that your horse can remember a task, but he won't remember understanding the meaning unless we are consistent at the moment we teach him. You can't be thinking about what they did in the past, and you certainly can't discipline them for something they did in the past because they only relate to the present.
Horse's have a powerful memory, and we don't want to be the cause of stressful memories. Although their minds are keen, they don't have the power to reason. This is how we are different. Because of our reasoning power, we can plan birthdays, vacations, and even our retirement. We make decisions concerning our appearance; horses could care less how they look. Horses will eat until they are content. They will walk away and not even think of when or where their next meal will be. They don't have an ego. They aren't greedy. For these reasons, horses only relate to the current situation.
The first step in changing your interaction with your horse is to understand that your horse processes differently. Once we understand this then we can be a lot better prepared to communicate with him.
We have to be consistent, and we have to be present.
This is good horsemanship.
Good habits are formed by repetition, and so are bad habits.
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