Michelle and I recently started volunteering for CORRAL Riding Academy. CORRAL uses horses to help middle and high school girls overcome the trauma in their lives using a technique known as equine-assisted psychotherapy (EAPT). During EAPT a girl will work with a horse using techniques derived from Natural Horsemanship and an equine specialist (i.e. a trainer) will oversee the session interpreting the horse’s body language. The equine specialist then informs a professional therapist what the horse is saying and this feedback is used to guide therapeutic sessions.
Since joining CORRAL, I have been training as an equine specialist with Bob the draft horse. This is part one of a three part series about the lessons I have learned from Bob as an Equine Specialist. The series appears on CORRAL’s blog.
Lessons From Bob: Don’t Overthink It
Relationships are tough to build and develop. They require people or animals whose personality traits click well with your own and often incorporate an unknown X-factor. Once these relationships form, there are a myriad of cues that convey information about feelings, expectations, or relationship boundaries. Interpreting these complex signals can be a challenge for anybody, but can be especially challenging for individuals facing emotional and/or physical trauma in their lives.
Read the rest here.