We all talk about the importance of developing good ‘self esteem,’ a person’s overall emotional evaluation of his or her own worth. It is a judgment of oneself as well as an attitude toward the self. Yes, it is VERY important.
However, new research suggests that ‘self compassion’ may be equally, if not more important, especially when it comes to feeling good about our bodies. I SO GET THIS! We are always trying to teach how to be ‘compassionate’ towards others – non-
judgmental, sympathetic, understand, accepting. When we apply these principals to ourselves, we may be able to turn off the hyper-critical judge and jury that drive so many of us. I found a great website “Self-Compassion A Healthier Way of Relating to Yourself” that offers many free resources for anyone wanting to better understand how to develop ‘Self Compassion’.
Without realizing it, we have been helping our client’s develop ‘self compassion’ through their work with the horses. We have always encouraged our clients to see ‘set backs’ as part of the process and, especially when working with adults, we emphasis that we have to crawl before we can walk or run, “give yourself
permission to learn“. Too often we don’t even try new things because we have no tolerance for not being ‘good enough’ (in our own eyes). Most often we would not hold someone else to an unrealistic expectation that they would be ‘expert’ in something they were still learning to do. We must be more patient and compassionate with ourselves.The good news is that horses are! They are so forgiving as we fumble our way along and learn how to become partners with them. They help our clients see that sometimes we have to take baby steps “and that’s ok”.
Being too self critical can lead to all kinds of problems, from all types of addictions to depression. Through work with horses we can help our clients become more ‘self-compassionate’. If you or someone you know is struggling with life’s challenges, we are here to help. Give us a call our send us an email to schedule a visit. We will show you around the ranch, introduce our wonderful horses, learn more about the issues you are dealing with and share how work with horse may be able to help.