When a person has dedicated the time to practice one of two things will happen:
Neither really matter, but what does matter is if a person reflects upon those experiences to learn from them to continually progress and become more consistent towards bettering oneself in order to better ones horse. In order to be progressive in your reflection you must break it down into four catorgories:
Break down the specific ride that took place earlier in the day.
Take the reflective experience from the day and compare it to all the experiences with the horses of your past.
Take the reflective experience from the day and compare it to how you want your horse to look in a finished stage of horsemanship as you know it at the time. This will change over time and with progression.
Take the reflective experience from the day and compare it to how your mentors would have rode the horse.
With in each of the four reflective categories it is important to question these factors into each phase:
You must identify the good and bad of each ride in order to be able to reflect on the experience.
You must ask yourself why you think the good or bad moments happened.
You must take those moments and think of ways to improve upon them in order to someday achieve a good finished product in a more efficiently beneficial way to all.
If your able to remember and reflect upon the rides you have in this manner some bigger picture items will start to form with in your thoughts. These items will be the:
Refinements within processes
You will start to venture outside the norms, as you know them, in order to run new experiments leading to new solutions and patterns that start to consistently work not only with the physical side of the horse but the emotional side of the horse.
Empathy through relatability
You start to feel very empathetic towards horses by relating to them physically and emotionally. You stop enforcing your agenda, expectations, and your faults on the horse by truly tapping into what they need through feel, not what you want from them.
You start to find the balance between the big picture and small picture, allowing you to react in the moment to do what best fits the horse instead of dwelling on a minuscule detail that isn’t perfect. Allowing you to see and feel the whole horse (physically and emotionally,) and start to understand the balance of timing (urgency and patience,) while becoming more confident in the horse and yourself to do right.
Within the reflective process a person is able to break each ride down in such a manner that they can start to form opinions and experiments for the future in order to achieve a better self and ultimately a better horse. What you should get after sifting each ride through this process is a new outlook on yourself, or the horse, to help you successfully communicate your current projection of correct movement to your horse.
To relate all of this back to human experiences with out horses, replace rides with experiences with other people that you have had. Replace horse with a certain persons name. Think back upon your great meetings with people and the confrontations you have had with people, run both situations through the reflective process in order to reap the benefits from the positive engagements and to learn from the confrontational experiences. If your not already doing this conciously, its time to start.