Struggle is an inside job. That’s pretty heavy stuff. Sunny Massad, the author of the book “Untherapy” said this to me in a session. What a simple way to sum up how we cause our own road blocks in life. This is also a very empowering concept. If I cause my own struggle, I have the power to stop struggling…right now.
I consider this the next step in my evolution towards becoming the human I want to be.
For me, the path I’ve traveled so far has gotten me (almost) to Level 4 in the Parelli Program. Through this program and with this goal of Level 4, I’ve had to do lots of soul searching and looking inside to get the bigger lessons, and work on me so I could be the partner my horse needs and wants me to be.
As recent as a year ago I was not emotionally at a place where I would have been able to consider using my fears. I was still coping with them, honoring them and backing off; which was exactly where I needed to be. I’m not out of that place completely, but I’m ready to step outside my current comfort zone, which has expanded through my journey with Parelli, business, cattle, marriage, and well…life.
It’s been quite a shift for me to recognize that something I was terrified of considering is now a thing I’m ready to move toward.
In considering Pat Parelli’s quote, “Take care of your horsemanship and it will take care of you”, the concept of using my fear has come to me consistently and I’m ready to begin to do it, in earnest. I see, even more clearly now, the more I work on my horsemanship and learn to help my horse, the more my life evolves and expands. Beautiful opportunities seem to show up more often. This is such a powerful awareness. At its core, my journey to Level 4 is preparing me as a human being to be able to do much bigger things…mentally, emotionally, and physically.
I continue to marvel at how the Parelli Program changes lives and, in so many ways, is parallel to many things well beyond our life with our horses..
I attended my first Instructor Conference and Parelli Summit this year and walked away with such clarity and inspiration. At the Instructor Conference Pat talked about how importance it is to know where we’re at and to own that. I have been pondering this lots, to find the words to convey the power of that Conference for me and I’m not sure I’m there yet, but want to share this so I’ll give it a try. Let me start by referencing my current main life growth goal…self-love. As I continue to move toward true self-love, I’ll continue to be better able to accept myself. After much licking and chewing on Pat’s words at the Instructor Conference, I realized I’m now ready to step into things I’m uncomfortable with (leverage my fears) to help me better fulfill this goal of true self-acceptance. Here’s an example: Pat talked to us about the Instructor guidelines evolving and how some of us moved from 1 or 2 Star Junior Instructors back to Trainee status. He told us, he noticed some of us hadn’t put “trainee” on our name tag. He talked about how knowing and owning where we’re at and being proud of it is an important key. I can’t tell you how EMPOWERING that was for me. I have been beating myself up to some degree since I started this journey as a Parelli Professional for not being “good enough”. This is where my struggle has been my inside job. I’ve always been exactly where I needed to be; in all life’s beautiful messiness.
I walked away from the Instructor Conference with the commitment to know where I’m at and be proud; own it. I recommitted to a “working to learn” mentality as I complete my Level 4 and once I’m a 2 Star Instructor I’ll have a goal of studying with higher level instructors and mentors for many hours. I will commit to continuing my life and career with that mentality.
We have to take stock of what we’ve accomplished and always remember, this is the juicy part. There is no getting there, I’m already here. For me, this journey is about the inner growth that is required to continue improving my abilities and skills with horses. So, the fact that I’m mentally and emotionally at a place where I’m ready to use my fears to help me progress is such a big accomplishment, words can’t even express what it means for me. This is the power of committing to the Parelli Program to develop a foundation and use the blueprints provided for us as we work toward our goals to achieve Level 4, then move on to a specialization in the horse world. Yes, there are amazing skills with horses to be gained…but without the inner growth, how far can we really get? I’m still in such awe of yet another big shift in my life that Parelli has facilitated. Here’s to your journey. May you have the ongoing gifts of beautiful struggles, fears that teach and empower you, and neverending self improvement.