The topic of fear came up in the barn this morning. A mature woman, like me, expressed that although she would like to ride she was a bit afraid. I had to agree that riding does contain a strong element of fear. I hear it all the time from others. I feel it myself sometimes. It is very real. It holds many of us back. It seems to become more palpable as we mature.
Yesterday I saw a University student with a sticker on his backpack that said something to the effect of, “do one thing every day that scares you”. I thought long about it. I don’t like to be afraid. But I admitted that fear can keep me from doing things and I could see the merit in this motto. But it made me a bit uneasy, going against every self preservationist bone in my body.
We all have moments of fear when we ride. Will we be able to communicate with our horses? Will there be excited bucking, spooking and side stepping? Will we lose balance? Will we fall? Will we fail?
Silly though I think some of these fears may be, they are very real. And the truth is...sometimes we do not communicate effectively, our horses do buck and spook and side step. We lose balance. We fall. But we do not fail. Not if we have tried.
By turning into the fear that opposes us and facing it head on, we cannot fail. Instead, we fly. And flying is amazing.
Be not afraid. Take flight. Ride.