Monday, January 11, 2016

Trust and b.r.a.v.i.n.g.

Brene Brown writes about breaking the elements of trust down so that we have better language around it - instead of saying, "I don't trust you." and ending the conversation there, we should have the ability to discuss the elements of trust. And she proposes the elements thusly:

Boundaries - the ability to set clear boundaries and enforce them
Reliability - that you do what you say you're going to do
Accountability - that you take ownership for your behavior
Vault - the ability to not share experiences when they aren't yours to share
Integrity - that your actions match your words
Non-judgement - being able to ask for what you need without feeling lessened by asking for help
Generosity - being able to make generous assumptions

A lifetime of between the ears shots because I love them
This makes me think about how many moving pieces we have to trust when we're in the arena. We have to trust our horse. Obviously, certain pieces of trust between people don't apply to horses. (Does he respect the boundaries I set for him? Does he respond in a reliable manner, even if it's less than ideal? When he misbehaves, can I extend him a generous assumption; was there something spooky, or do I jump to calling him an a**?)

We have to trust our trainer. (Are the goals clear and the path toward the goal explained? Is the trainer reliable? When there's a miscommunication, can the trainer own their responsibility? Is there a 'vault', can you trust the trainer to keep your stories your own? Does the trainer ride like she teaches? Does the trainer respond empathetically to requests for help or does she get impatient and judgemental? Does the trainer remain generous in her assumptions as you struggle forward?)

We have to trust our riding partners.

My best friend riding Chente!

And our horses have to trust us. 


  1. finding a trainer i truly trusted was such a critical piece of rebuilding my confidence. and i think it was only then that i started really trusting the horses again too... (which itself allowed the horse to finally trust *me*, maybe). great post tho - lots of food for thought !

    1. Do you have the process of finding your trainers chronicled on your blog?

    2. as a matter of fact, i do (at least in part, if you want more info feel free to ask!):

  2. This is a great post! These are certainly things that all of us should consider.