Solve Horseback Riding Fear With An Attitude Of Gratitude

It's completely reasonable that you might have some fear when horseback riding. After all, you’re dealing with a reactive (reactive means bolt, spin, buck, shy, or rear!) animal that outweighs you by a lot! But you can solve those horseback riding fears by adopting an attitude of gratitude.

The first thing you need to remember is that 99% of the things you fear never come to pass. So why waste all that energy worrying about things that will probably never happen. Mark Twain summed it up when he said. "I have been through some terrible things in my life, some of which actually happened."

So don't focus on what you're afraid of. Destroy horseback riding fear by focusing on what you're grateful for.

Are you afraid of getting bucked off your horse? Be grateful that you get to spend time outdoors with beautiful animals.

Are you afraid you'll bomb at a competition? Be grateful you’re strong and healthy enough to compete.

Are you afraid of getting sick? Be grateful you’re not blind or crippled.

Are you afraid of becoming blind or crippled? Be grateful that you have a sharp mind.

Are you afraid you're not smart enough? Be grateful you have a loving heart.

Maybe you don’t like your job? Be grateful you have work so you can pay your bills (…and then go about finding your passion so you can do what you love and love what you do!).

Gratitude actually attracts more of the things you appreciate and value into your life. Do what Oprah Winfrey does. Start a gratitude journal. Everyday, jot down five things you're grateful for. If you can't think of five things, at least write down, "I'm breathing!" If you’re having a really bad day, and you ask yourself what you're grateful for, you might end up growling, "Nothing!" If that’s how you feel, ask a better question. Ask, "What could I be grateful for?"

I bet you’ll come up with all kinds of answers to that question.

I’ll get you started. How about:

The kindness of strangers

Your health

Your family

Your horse

Not having to cook tonight (my personal favorite)


Toilets that flush

A cleansing rain

Doing a great job and having your efforts appreciated


The smell of gardenia

Air conditioning

Your favorite song

A nap

Petting a dog

Bright colors

Eating popcorn at the movies


The absence of pain


Old friends

White chocolate

Modern appliances

Finding a parking space exactly where you need one

A good book

A hot shower

Savoring the scents of life (flowers, food, the earth, your child’s hair, the barn)

The gift of sight

Days off

A gentle breeze


Rocking chairs

Restaurants that deliver

Your plane landing safely


Solve your horseback riding fear (and any other fears!) by nurturing this attitude of gratitude. Suddenly your horse's behavior won't seem so scary, the jumps won’t seem so big, the course won't seem so overwhelming, and the judges won’t seem so threatening.

A Happy Horse

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Comment by Jennifer Lamm on August 8, 2010 at 12:24pm
:) I hope people take your words to heart.... I believe that horses understand gratitude.... :)
Comment by Jane Savoie on August 8, 2010 at 7:15am
Happy to help!!
Comment by Donna Douglas on August 8, 2010 at 7:03am
I am grateful for Jane and her wonderful, insightful and useful blog posts! Please don't ever stop! (:
Comment by Ayesha on August 7, 2010 at 5:10pm
What a lovely idea
Comment by Jane Savoie on August 7, 2010 at 7:15am
Thanks! Yes, we are VERY lucky!!! :-)
Comment by Dressage For The Rest Of Us on August 7, 2010 at 12:48am
I have to say I just love your stuff. Your way of thinking and methodology is a blessing to both us and our horses.

How lucky are we that we get to have horses when other people throughout the world suffer as they do?

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