Feelings for Mr. Ed
Pick your horse.
If you were standing in front of a line of horses and someone asked you which one you wanted to work with today, which one you wanted to ride, what would you say? Let’s say you know nothing about these horses. How would you decide which one to pick?
Would you pick a horse based on its looks? Its size? Would you pick one based on temperament, assuming you know anything about equine body language? Would you ask someone with more experience to pick for you? Would you seek someone else’s authority? Would you feel stress? What if I pick the wrong horse? What if I make a mistake? What if the horse hates me?
I chose by feel.
I stood in front of each horse in turn.
The 1st one- long hair, chestnut red, stared right back at me. I felt nothing but a long stare and admiration for such a fine creature.
In 2nd horse - a tall black horse that looked at me calmly. I felt a surge of excitement out of nowhere.
The 3rd horse was a short, fat brown red round pony that made me squeal in delight and laugh “you’re so cute!” I wanted to take care of it.
I looked at all of them again. The 1st horse gave me nothing- no feelings, no sensations inside. The 3rd one elicited a response from me, yes. But the 2nd horse generated something deep in me. Something with forward rolling momentum. A gurgling, churning movement. That’s the one I picked.
I thought everyone made decisions this way.
It’s a different process from logic, and it’s based on sensation, on what your body feels from moment to moment. In graduate school, I was made fun of for making decisions this way because it takes a bit of time to get clear about what you’re sensing. One of my teachers thought I was slow. But this is intuitive decision making, not logic. It does not happen in the brain; it happens in the gut. No doubt that logic is a strength; however, my intuitive decisions never lead me astray.
The equine coach I was working with said that people who pick the 1st horse are looking for a challenge, as she’s the lead mare. People who pick the 2nd horse are emotionally sensitive types, while people who pick the 3rd tend to be afraid of horses.
Intuitive decision-making ensures that we pick what we’re ready for.