Sunday, April 14, 2013

Thinking about stress

Well, I'm more than thinking about it.  I'm living it.  

Work has been just horrible for me as far as stress goes.  Long hours, with both mental and physical exhaustion.  Because of this I have missed many days of riding and of course I don't like it.  

On Friday, here is where I stood:  I hadn't ridden either horse in a week.  The work day had been insane, and I just didn't have it in me to go out and ride.  But it was more than just being physically tired.  I realized I may have a little bit of a problem.  

I didn't want to ride Phil.  

The thing is this - riding Phil is not 100% fun right now.  It's worlds better than it was when I first got him, but it's still stressful.  He's still tense and there are many things that still set him off and cause him to throw his head in the air and leap forward.  Most of the time it's something I can handle, but a collection of circumstances had made it so that I really didn't want to get on him.  

First, I hadn't ridden him for a week.  When he has more than one day off, Phil seems to take a step back as far as relaxation goes.  After a week...sheesh.  I really wasn't looking forward to it.  

Second, I was stressed out enough.  Did I really want to get on a stressed out animal?  Would it even be a good idea?  

Lastly, it was raining.  The roof on the arena is metal.  Phil doesn't like wind and rain.  See where I'm going with this?  Why would I want to add more stress to my life?  

I chickened out and didn't ride on Friday.  

Saturday, I worked, but after work I decided I needed to ride.  I got Phil ready.  It was raining and he was spooky when I was just lunging him.  Maybe I could just lunge him? And blow it off again?  

Nope, I couldn't do it.  I got on him.  As were were walking around and I was trying to relax, it occurred to me - both Phil and I have stressful jobs.  I still love my job, and I think Phil likes his.  So I was going to have to help Phil through his stress.  

Amazingly, we had a pretty good ride.  Not the most relaxed ever, but certainly not the worst.  

I guess we make a good team.  And, not surprisingly, I was much less stressed after my ride.  Kaswyn was a god boy too.  I have to remember that even though I might be stressed about riding, that it's still good therapy for me.  

So if you're stressed, go get on your pony.  That might help.  


Oak Creek Ranch said...


L.Williams said...

I totally agree, ponies help diffuse stress!

Mac said...

Great post Sheri! I think I'll print out your quote about both you AND Phil having stressful "jobs" and post it on my work pinboard as a reminder...

Hope things settle down soon for you.

Adventures of the Super Ponies said...

You aren't alone! There were times when I didn't want to rode bre when she was young. She was tense and unpredictable. I felt like a horrible rider because there was no way to look pretty up there even on the best day. Thanks for sharing this. It's important for others to know some times this is part of riding and we aren't alone.

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