Leadership presents itself in many forms.  Professionals who need strong leadership skills include school principals, teachers, parents, pastors, and even presidents.  Each faces the challenge of leading in a manner that will inspire others to willingly follow.  As you may already know, a horse has an innate instinct to follow his leader.  When you successfully fill your role as a leader, you provide him with comfort, companionship, and a sense of security.

Horses naturally bring out "the child" in me.  The relationship that I share with them is one of “childlike innocence."  At first glance, this may seem counterintuitive to the creation of a comfortable environment in which horses want to follow my leadership, but they do.  Horses are always reading us just as we are always reading them.  As a result of my own personal experiences with horses, I've come to the conclusion that they judge us based on an "Academy of Leadership" so to speak.  Upon graduation, your "diploma" defines what type of leader you have become.  The following provides an example of how your horse might grade your leadership skills:

(A ) The Superior Leader— Both horse and human are mentally, spiritually, physically, and emotionally balanced (the Centaur Connection). The human knows how and when to lead the horse, yet also knows when to follow. Likewise, the horse knows this as well. It is as if the two have become one.

(B) The Just Leader —Always fair in his treatment of horses —Thus, the horse willingly follows his lead.

(C) The Leader Who Gives Mixed Signals- This leader is both just and unjust, not due to malice but simply from the foibles of human nature. You can't clearly determine who is the leader or who is the follower. Sometimes they get it right and sometimes they don’t.

(D) The Unjust Leader—Neither clear nor fair —This person will take the lead and force the horse to follow (no matter what it takes to do so).

(E) The Failed Leader—Inhumane

I love this Academy and I do so admire the teaching style that horses possess. As I said earlier, I feel like an eager child and my horse teachers provide a natural environment in which I can always learn more.  Horses innately understand the secrets of teaching.  Those that have a knack for keeping it educational (yet fun) help me to better maintain my focus.  Horses have sparked my passion to bring the best me forward as I enjoy our experiences together.  In this Academy, I never want to hurt or disrespect my beloved teachers.  Talk about bringing an apple to the teacher every day!!!

Obviously, I am still a student in the Academy of Leadership. This Academy is taught by all the horses that I have come in contact with as well as some that I have never met.  In the daily tests upon which I am graded, horses have granted me a variety of A's, B's, C's, D's, and (unfortunately) occasional E's as well.  The E's have allowed horses to generously demonstrate lessons of forgiveness.  If you prove to be a diligent student, horses will give you a second chance to bring up your grades and might even erase an E every now and then.

Would you like to schedule a group or private clinic in 2016? You too can learn valuable lessons in the "Academy of Leadership" as we examine your perception of your leadership style vs. the characteristics horses actually see within you.  All students (A through E) are welcome. You never know!  You might even discover that learning from horses causes you to feel childlike and alive as well.  Hope to see you soon!

Have a great rest of the week and remain the student of the horse.  


Linda SalinasComment