Confession time: I have some major attachment issues.
Attachment – to an outcome, an agenda, a certain way of doing something – has been a theme throughout my life. Over the past year, I’ve made friends with my attachment tendencies. I recognize when it’s happening, and I release and trust the process.
At least, I thought I was.
Last week, I took an afternoon off and spent time horsing around… literally! Hosted by the fabulous Rachel Dexheimer at Redtail Farm, I and five other workshop participants were introduced to Rowan, Grace, Jake and the rest of the herd. We spent time observing, walking with and talking to the horses. As the day progressed, I realized that my capacity to release is still limited.
During the workshop, we each had time to be one-on-one with a horse. We were instructed to see if we could have the horse follow us as we walked, using nothing more than our body language, touch, voice and presence. While there was a goal – to walk with the horse – we were encouraged to be present enough to adapt to what the moment gifted us.
My achievement-oriented, good-student button was pushed. Even with the instructions to adapt, my attachment to “walk with me=good, stand still=bad” surfaced.
Jake and I spent a few minutes checking each other out, and I tried to make him walk with me. See what’s wrong there? I tried to make him do something. He wasn’t particularly interested in walking. Perhaps Jake sensed my overachiever getting in the way. Perhaps he only wanted to scratch his cheek on the fence. I couldn’t be sure.
At some point, I realized that he didn’t want what I wanted. I made the choice to relax. I stood next to Jake with my hand on his shoulder and told him how handsome he was. He craned his neck and head around, his eye just inches from mine. He stood there and breathed with me. It was magical.
Jake invited me to be in the moment, to let go of attachment to anything specific happening. If I had not taken off my blinders, I would have missed seeing and feeling that the moment was all that mattered.
The afternoon brought me one step closer to releasing attachment and trusting that everything is happening perfectly. Breathe, Trust, Release.
What do you know and trust about yourself? Where is trust lacking? What role does trust play in achieving your goals?