The struggle of patience

I’m not a patient person. I don’t do well in construction zones. I don’t enjoy waiting for packages to arrive in the mail. I hate it when the internet is slow.  You can imagine this is not an ideal personality characteristic to bring to the barn. I strive for zen-like patience when dealing with horses, but it’s a struggle sometimes!

Despite my best intentions, I did not proceed through the 3 month longeing portion of Training the Young Horse with Candy. I did about two weeks of longeing, figured that was good enough, and started riding.

Go, Candy, go!

My thought process was something like, “Candy’s not unbroke; she’s just green! I won’t ask much while I’m riding. We’ll walk a lot, and do a little trotting. Maybe we’ll canter if she feels really excellent!” 

And that was fine, for a while. I firmly believe hauling out and trail riding has been beneficial. She’s also done some excellent work in the arena. However, I clearly pushed too much when I asked for some canter and when I put her in a group in the open. It seems like she’s lost some confidence recently.

So back to the longe line we go. I’ll force myself to be patient and follow a schedule. No jumping ahead, no skipping steps. The longe is a great place for Candy to find balance, build muscle, and regain confidence. There’s no reason to hurry her along or leave gaps in her training.

Do you struggle with patience? How do you deal?

Author: Stephanie

Equestrian, amateur cook, people person.

16 thoughts on “The struggle of patience”

  1. Both Dee and I are short on patience. This winter has been a lesson in patience for sure. We’ve spent the past 4 months working on building up her lower back muscles by keeping her relaxed and keeping her head down and back lifted. It’s been a lesson in patience for sure. And I still struggle with it every day.

  2. my Achilles heel appears to be “WOW that was great, now one more time…” I’m learning that if I ever feel like saying wow to my horse, I need to end. Right then. Get off the horse.

    I’m getting better at it.

  3. Sooooooo impatient!!! I love to skip steps and plow ahead. Maybe why Fiona still can’t ride a 20 meter circle…..but, she does hunt! Priorities

  4. Every time I get impatient, something fortuitously happens to remind me to back down. Like falling off my horses butt or getting dumped or promptly told NOPE CAN’T EVEN CANTER NOW. It’s nice to have something keep me so honest! Honestly!

  5. Ugh patience is definitely not my strength either!! I also tend to swing like a pendulum between extremes – meaning that I’ll keep going with one thing until it’s suddenly very much the wrong thing, then I swing wildly away in the other direction, usually going too far with that too haha. My poor horses…. Hopefully Candy does well with your shift of focus to lunging!!

  6. It is hard to have patience with the young ones and it takes practice. I did all this reading and watching before I started my colt. Some things I followed to a T and probably would not again if I could go back. Do not beat yourself up over it. Tomorrow is a new day. Go to what you both know and do really well and build on that. Starting her riding early was not necessarily the wrong decision. Every horse is different and there are going to be times all throughout their lives where you will have to take a step or 2 back…just like us. I look forward to seeing how it goes!

  7. So with you on the lack of patience. At the same time though, I think you have to push a little to see where you’re at sometimes. Just like as riders we have to work just outside of our comfort zone to improve, I think the horses do too. It’s discouraging when we push too far though. Sounds like you have a good plan moving forward. I’m sure you’ll have Candy back to herself in no time!

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