Author of A RANCH DAY RETREAT explores the field of Equine Assisted Learning to find out why horses make such great teachers for transformational change, both at the personal and organizational level.
Mindfulness: The Energy of Horses and Nature
A non-spiritual approach means no dogma, although it doesn't rule out a spiritual personal experience. Have you ever noticed the serene state of horses at rest in nature. As humans, we too can benefit from quieting our minds. Here we can gain inspiration, and new ideas that open us up to creative possibilities. Mindfulness encourages us to live in, and experience, the moment, the way horses are naturally.
This practical-approach workshop is for the beginner to advanced. Whether it's your first introduction to mindfulness/meditation techniques, or you're a practiced yogi, this is your chance to tap into the unique equine energy. It's meant to be fun and unique, and (as you will learn from the horses way) totally non-judgmental.
There's certainly a spiritual element to meditation. Many feel there's a profound spiritual nature to horses as well. But this mental practice is just as "physical and mechanical" as it is metaphysical. Corporations like Google, General Mills, Target and many more are adopting the practice, for a number of reasons. Improved health, morale, and well being obviously, but the bottom-line is they are gaining efficiency, innovation, effectiveness and productivity... real personal and organizational results.
No matter where you are on the path, Ranch Day offers a unique opportuniy to join up.
Goal Setting: The Clear Path to Personal Satisfaction
Any student of personal development has studied goal setting, as has any successful professional.
We simply wouldn't offer it, if it was the same old thing.
This workshop could be called "The Path to Personal Satisfaction". That's what it's all about. This is your chance take thoughtful, personal time-out to evaluate and plan. You'll end up creating events in your future that were never there before.
We're going to share some ideas that you may have never heard, and certainly in a novel context. Get ready to make room for something exciting and new in your future. Participants will leave with not only new direction, but the energy and persistence that create action.
There is no question that there is profound power in goals. We will cover the qualities of creating effective goals, as well as the strict science behind them. Participants will gain new confidence and competence in not only creating personal goals but in achiving them and the secret to personal satisfation.
With direct feedback from horses, participants will gain competence in setting effective goals, not only for themselves but for others, which will translate to more satisfaction for their families and organizations.
Visualization: Creating Mental Achievement Patterns
Simply put, this is our ability to use the imagination through pictures or mental imagery to create visions of what we want in our lives and how to make them happen. Along with focus and emotion it becomes a powerful, creative tool that helps us achieve what we want in life.
This is mental rehearsal. The better we become at this, the better we become at everything. We could call it, "How to become better at everything" but instead, we will just state that is definitely for everybody. You'll understand the difference between Outcome and Process visualization, tune up your abilities and refine your techniques. Regarding goals, you will learn techniques to hone their clarity and decrease their challenges. That will make life better too.
There is some science behind it, and we will discuss the research and specific applications, then practice with horses. Horses offer clear and immediate feedback, you'll see.
Non Verbal Communication: Transmitting Clear Thoughts and Emotions
Horses are non-verbal communicators. Although that sounds obvious, so are we. They are just so much better at it than us, because they can't rely on words.
What good does it do us to become better non-verbal communicators? Well, they say 90% or more of communication is non-verbal. That’s not strictly just body language. We're talking about transmitting thoughts and emotions.
As we begin to understand what the horse is "receiving" in terms of thoughts and emotions we will become much more aware of, and in tune with, what we are "sending" or "transmitting". Warning: Horses do not lie. They teach us authenticity. Regarding emotions, as a form of non-verbal communication, we will explore the topics of congruence and alignment.
This workshop aims not only to develop better communication skills, which benefit all of our relationships, personally, professionally and socially, but to begin bringing our own thoughts and emotions into congruence and alignment. It could be called, "Transmitting Thoughts and Emotions". In fact that’s the name of the chapter in the book, which you could just read, but you'll get a whole lot more out of practicing with horses at Ranch Day.
Leadership: The Followers' Needs and Natural Herd Dynamics
One of the stronger more straightforward lessons that horses have to immediately teach us. Horses are animals of prey. They are herd animals that require, and respond to, strong leadership. By strong, we're not talking about dominance but rather cooperation. By understanding the needs of followers, we immediately become stronger leaders. We will explore these needs, as they relate to horses, and more importantly, to our own relationships.
Specifically we are talking about trust-based leadership principals and techniques. So trust is a central element in this workshop. It will come as no surprise that trust begins with ourselves, and developing that trust is a primary goal of this workshop.
We will introduce and explore some of the central tenants of "Natural Horsemanship" which move away from models of dominance, intimidation and coercion and rather adopt trust, authenticity, compassion and cooperation. This is also an exceptional "team-building" workshop for groups.
Work Ethic: Cooperative Leadership and Effective Goals
Expert opinions' vary as to whether work ethic can even be taught. So the goal of this work shop is not to attempt to “instill work ethic” into participants (even lazy-bones, and "easy-keepers" are encouraged to attend).
There is however some interesting research that examines why “work ethic” rarely seems to be a problem among farm families. At Ranch Day, we will explore the key difference. More importantly we will share specific concepts and steps that can be brought right back to your family or organization and immediately applied to create positive change. Join our farm family for the afternoon at Ranch Day to experience and understand the difference.
Being animals of prey, horses instinctually conserve energy critical to their survival yet some have incredible work ethic. How do we get them to work for us? Not suprisingly, the answers include clear goal setting, and effective leadership. It’s an enlightening workshop that will have your head nodding with new understanding. We may get our hands dirty on the ranch, but don’t worry, we wont work too hard.
RANCH DAY workshops are offered in Pacific Palisades California. Wolf speaks about the book and the intresting topics above to groups both on and off-site. Find out more today.