The sign at the end of the driveway at a barn where I used to ride reminded us as we left to “Stay Centered.” Why is that important? Any horse person knows that staying centered and balanced in the saddle is paramount to good riding, but why remind us as to stay centered as we leave the barn?
I think the answer is probably a bit different for everyone. To me, it means that you can take the idea of staying centered and balanced, and apply it to your life outside of the barn.
I try to apply the same principles of riding to my life; for example, the idea that each time you get in the saddle you must support your horse, help him have the most positive experience possible, and find his best effort today while realizing that it might be different today that it was yesterday. There’s no point in getting frustrated when things don’t go as well as you think they should. If something is going poorly, most often you must look to yourself as the cause; it’s amazing how often making a change in the rider suddenly makes a change in the horse.
Another great horse lesson that I try to apply to my life is to stay relaxed. Just as your horse can feel your stress, frustration or fear, people can sense when you’re upset. Sometimes a situation can be kept under control by simply letting go of stress or frustration so you can focus on the root cause of the problem. And sometimes not, but it never serves you badly to remain calm and focused.
And that is why I’ve named this blog as a nod to that message: “Centered in the Saddle.” In the saddle, as in life, I try to stay centered and balanced for best results.