Happiness is not a matter of intensity but of balance, order, rhythm and harmony. ~ Thomas Merton

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The Game of the Game

Horsenality is not an excuse. It is a piece of information that gives us a strategy.
~ Pat Parelli, The Game of the Game, Mastery Lesson, Issue 1

I've been off in my program with Cricket. No worries, I'll just pick it back up. I spent last night watching the first Mastery Lesson. Wow!

The first lesson, entitled "The Game of the Game" was about the circle game. But not just about sending your horse in a circle. It was about offering the horse choices so she could be an active participant in finding the circle and playing the game. Towards the end of the lesson, Pat talks about the mare's horsenality and the results of the session. And the above quote struck me.

Horsenality is not an excuse. It is a piece of information that gives us a strategy.

It is rare that I will make excuses for Cricket based on her innate introversion. In so many ways, she defies the LBI - to the point I think she is more on the cusp of extroversion than previously thought. But how often do I use her horsenality to shape my strategy towards any given goal or task?

As a LBI, Cricket needs puzzles to solve and she needs to feel clever. She needs time to think, to make the less desirable choice and discover, for herself, why she ought to consider my ideas. How often do I set up the game so she can find it? Not as often as I should.

I've struggled with motivating Cricket on the 22' and the 45'. Some days are great but others, not so much. It's hit or miss. I need to look at the space in which I play and find - as Pat set up for Sam - a way to offer Cricket a puzzle. When she feels smart and successful, she'll offer me more. Just as Sam's horse - a mare similar to Cricket in disposition - began offering more to him.

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