Letting Go of the Notion of Control: Patience


My patience is continuously being tested, a situation I sometimes overcome and at other times am defeated by.  While there are countless examples in my life of when I have kept my patience by becoming aware of the very moment that I feel frustration, impatience, stress, and annoyance creep into my being, there are four times as many moments in which patience has not been my strong suit.  This has been the case with horses, people, or, even worse, myself.  I continually battle to become more aware of my patience in order to be successful in moments when it is being tested.

With horses, I tend to lose my patience whenever I am really working on perfecting something that I may have not understood in the first place.  I tend to want something so much that I stop working with the horse based on his current state, and I hyper-focus on what I want the horse to do. I ask too much and ultimately create a bit of a pissy horse that doesn’t like to be around me anymore.  I’m still trying to figure out how to do less and get more.

The situation I sometimes create due to my lack of patience with horses is the exact thing that I can’t stand when other people do it to me.  An example of this is a boss trying to have me do something for him, but micromanaging every aspect of the job as I am trying to do it.  Pretty soon I will stop caring and mentally tune out to finish the job.  In the end, I despise the boss for their lack of leadership and understanding of the bigger picture.   The question I have been asking myself lately is why would I do that which I personally despise to horses?

The personal patience issues I deal with have to do with a sense of pressure to impress or to please others.  With my mentors, I can’t help but overdo something while trying to impress them with how hard I have been working. I do this to show them how much I truly respect them and what they are teaching.  On the other hand, with clients I am continuously trying to please and impress them with the product I am providing.  In both cases, I feel the pressure of trying to get their horse to perform at its very best, and I ultimately do too much with the result that the horses begin to resent the work I do with them.

My patience is tested the most when I battle with the pressure I place upon myself to succeed. I pressure myself to keep progressing and almost force it to happen.  If I feel that I should be progressing past the point at which I am, I always push myself and the horse too hard.  I want to be the best at what I do, and I want it all as quickly as possible, but forcing it to happen doesn’t help the cause.  Patience is the key, and by doing less I accomplish more.


Application to Daily Life:

I’m sure that each and every person has a passion that they pursue so fiercely that they occasionally lose their patience in the process.  In most cases it only affects your mental psyche. For example, if your passion was a solitary endeavor, such as drawing, the only person affected would be yourself.  In other cases, you may be dealing with other beings – dogs, people, horses, etc – so there is another creature that needs to be taken into consideration.  Figure out which category you fall into and think of the examples in which you lost your patience and took it out on yourself or others.  Now think of how you can check yourself in those situations in the future, allowing you to keep a continuous state of positive thinking and patience.  This will allow you to change course if necessary or get a good result sooner that leaves things on a good note!

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