Monday, August 02, 2010

Guiding A Horse

I was reading a short little diddy from a woman who trains horses the other day. She was showing what she has learned about leadership while bringing up these fine animals. The lesson I was reading focused on leading rather than dominating.

An example of this is when a horse is first born. Horses are prey animals (like my bunny, it means they run from everything because they think it's going to eat them) and a baby horse learns right away to run.

Now there are two ways to teach a horse not to run from you. One is to put a halter on it and force it to go wherever you tell it to. The problem is, it's a prey animal, it thinks you're forcing it to do something so you can eat it. so he wil buck, he will pull, he will fight. You have basically taught the horse that as the leader you are going to corner him and coerce him into doing what you want.

The other way works much better. You lead the mother. You befriend the horse. Soon the horse learns to follow because mommy does and eventually will follow you because he has learned to trust you. This trainer writes that this is the hardest part for people to do, to lead without pulling, to lead on faith.

And I started thinking this is so true in many areas. Leadership, obviously. But do we do this in faith? We don't lead, we put a halter on right away and teach someone they have to believe what we believe, how we believe it, act the right way, and if they deviate at all, coerce them. It's almost like we're scared people won't have faith in us or God if we have faith in them. So we force faith...

Something to think about. I know for me, I work with high school students. Try forcing a teenager to do something, even something good for them, even something they like, and see what happens...


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