Magic happens when humans and horses come together.
Horses are gifted teachers and amazing facilitators in the work of human development, emotional healing, and spiritual growth. These intelligent, sensitive creatures instantly respond to changes in our behavior, offering constant feedback for our actions.
Equine Guided Counselling requires no previous experience with horses and involves interacting with the horse on the ground in a safe setting with an experienced facilitator. Through specially designed activities, we can deepen our awareness of personal issues, underlying feelings, and areas of tension that limit our ability to reach our true potential. Interaction with the horse includes many different activities such as handling, grooming, or moving the horse around a pen with just our body.
A tremendous boost in self-esteem and confidence comes from learning how to establish boundaries and direct a thousand-pound creature through mental focus, creative visualization, and clarity of intent. These skills, which can be difficult to teach in a conventional counseling session, can be applied in personal life, relationships, career, and parenting. Even a single session can have life changing effects as we open to our true potential.
Horses are incapable of pretense; their reactions are unconditional and honest. Working with horses provides opportunities to learn critical life skills such as trust, respect, honesty, and communication. Horses use mostly non-vocal communication and are in-tune with human behavior. They ask us to be aware of our surroundings at all times and teach us self-awareness.
“[Horses] need us to have a calm, focused assurance. They need us to be consistent. They need us to be assertive yet non-threatening. They need us to be both strong and compassionate. In short, horses need us to be our best selves.” ~ Chris Irwin
Who is it for?
Equine Guided Counselling is useful for anyone who wants to develop qualities and skills in leadership, communication, and confidence. It has enormous benefits for disabled, disadvantaged, traumatized, and vulnerable people who like horses. For those who feel they have little control over their lives, interacting with horses can be very empowering. Issues vary and include uncovering and managing emotions such as anger, anxiety, sadness or grief, and could be related to self-esteem, assertiveness, control, trust, communication, boundaries, separation, perfectionism, decision-making, leadership, cooperation, or other social issues.
However, anyone can take part in this kind of work. Even if a person does not have a particular area of their life that they wish to change, the horse’s honest reaction to a person’s actions and behaviour can often provide insight into our true feelings and deeper understanding of ourselves. This work has many positive outcomes and they can range from increased self-esteem, clarity of thought, connectedness, personal healing, relaxation, assertiveness, and simply liking ourselves more. At the root of these transformations is an emotional and spiritual bond with the horse. There is something about a horse, something so generous and loving and forgiving, that is good for people. With their big, all-encompassing heart, horses accept us for who we really are, and gently and lovingly nudge us towards change. They give us the courage to look in the mirror and help us learn to love what we see.
“There is something about the outside of a horse that is good for the inside of a man.” ~ Winston Churchill
By working with horses you can learn to:
- Use emotion as information
- Alleviate anxiety and increase your confidence
- Establish boundaries
- Nurture healthier relationships
- Identify obstacles in your life and find a path through them
- Communicate with more confidence
- Connect with your authentic self
- Learn to speak your truth
- Move through change with confidence
- Increase energy levels and find motivation
- Explore and refine leadership
PO Box 555, Hope BC V0X 1L0
1 604 765-0685