I belong to a professional group of coaches where we coach each other as a means to help each other reflect on our own crap. I find this feedback invaluable as it makes me a better, more conscious person, as well as helping me to be a better coach to others.
The reality is that we live with ourselves, and are so comfortable in our own patterns, that we don’t see how we are projecting our own baggage into the world. It takes a third party to sometimes point this out to us, and make us reflect on how this viewpoint is impacting our state of being.
I learned a good lesson this week from a horse.
Well, sort of. One of the coaches in the program runs a retreat center using horses as spiritual guides for personal growth and team building. She is very intuitive and gave us all a challenge to pick a horse that “spoke to us” from a series of 6 photos she posted on Facebook.
My first horse pick spoke power, energy and confidence. However, I noticed that one particular horse was overlooked by majority of the people in the group. Therefore, I asked what I thought was an innocent question…
“Cheveyo (name of horse) seems to be overlooked, the underdog. I wonder what he has to say? Even those undervalued have a special gift to offer.”
Do you think my question was answered? Nope, in return I got another question…
“What part of you is projecting the feeling of being the underdog, overlooked, and undervalued? Where do you feel this way in your life?”
BAM! This question slammed me into a wall. (And come to find out, Cheveyo is one of their more confident horses, sometimes a bit of a bully.)
The instant I took a moment to reflect on this question, I was immediately taken back to elementary/middle school PE classes. I HATED PE. With all of my being. Why? Because I sucked at organized sports that required ball, hand, foot coordination. I also didn’t give two hoots about winning. And because of this, I was always picked LAST, or at least second runner up to last, when the coach gave us the wonderful, self-esteem-boosting task of picking our own teams. Who ever decided this was a good idea?
Therefore, I have always empathized with the underdog, the one overlooked. Like somehow if I recognized him or her, it won’t feel/be so bad. I was projecting my own crappy experience, my insecurities, on a horse of all “beings”!
TRUTH - Most of our behaviors, struggles, and emotions are tied into childhood experiences that we have created some significant meaning from, and then applied to our world.
This whole horse experience tickled me pink, enlightened me, and was a great opportunity for growth. Sometimes is does take someone else to recognize your stuff that you can’t see on your own. Who knew a horse could be so smart?
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