AMAZING THINGS HAPPEN WHEN YOU STEP OUT OF YOUR COMFORT ZONE!
June 29 2021
Writing this blog is WAY out of my comfort zone and I find myself doubting if I can really do it!! I was thinking back to when Jessica asked me to be guest blogger and I thought, why not?! It was winter at the time, I was spending more time at my desk and I wanted to support my fellow EAL facilitators. This monthly blog is such a creative and a fun way to increase knowledge and awareness about Equine Assisted Learning (EAL) and all the amazing ways it can benefit families and communities.
I now, find myself at the end of an insanely busy month with little time to fit this in! However, I got the inspiration that I needed to write this from an EAL session that I just had this morning. The session was all about CHOICES and at the end of each session participants are given time to complete a journal entry reflecting on what they experienced in the arena. The participants entry was, ‘I learned that sometimes its ok to make choices that take you out of your comfort zone because that’s how you learn!’ I thought this was extremely profound for a 13-year-old and it was just what I needed to read to get my butt in gear to write this!
I have been stepping out of my comfort zone since I took the EAL Facilitator Course in Sept 2020 and I have not looked back! The decision to take the Facilitator Course took me out of my comfort zone - starting a new business from scratch at 44 years old was out of my comfort zone – building an indoor arena last fall was out of my comfort zone – investing money into starting up a new business (program materials, training videos, logo design, website development) was (and still is) nerve wracking!! Starting a new business from scratch can be extremely overwhelming at times and I find myself not only stepping out of my comfort zone but continually learning and challenging myself. I am continually learning new ways to be a better facilitator, how to care for my horses that are now EAL teachers, listening to training videos, how to be a focus on the business side of things so I can keep offering this amazing program, how can I engage with community organizations – the list goes on and on.
So, where am I going with this? What I have noticed in the last few months that I have been purposefully taking an effort to continually step out of my comfort zone is ALL the amazing moments and experiences that have come into my life! I think back to the first EAL session that I offered through a special introductory deal that I was offering and I had the most unexpected, beautiful moment when one of my horses brought her head in softly to one of my clients and stayed there for several minutes. This was a horse that I raised, ride and love to pieces. I had never seen her do something like this before. It was an absolutely beautiful moment and is something I never would have experienced or even known was possible had I not continued to step up and out of my comfort zone.
When I was doing my hands- on training for the EAL Facilitator Course I had a similar experience with one of the horses at Equine Connection. My ‘aahaa’ moment or take away from one particular session was that, ‘Had I not persevered through those stations with the horse I was working with I would not have been able to experience that beautiful moment with her.’ It was a moment that I will never forget and is one that sticks with me through the tough days when I feel like giving up. There have been so many wonderful moments that I have experienced in the short amount of time I have been offering this program. I have witnessed some breakthroughs with teenagers in my arena, I have witnessed my horses interacting with clients in ways I have never seen them interact before, I have had parents call me and tell me that they feel a sense of calm knowing that their child has the opportunity to participate in the EAL program that I am offering – a sense of calm that they have not felt in a long time! These experiences have brought so much fulfillment to my life that I was truly not expecting. These moments inspire and motivate me every day to keep going and continue building my business to be better every day!
The most profound piece of all this is that I have found a renewed purpose in my life! By taking the chance to start this new venture I have found what I want to do for the rest of my life! It is true what they say – when you choose to life out your purpose your life has more clarity, more joy, more meaningful experiences, stronger relationships, decreased anxiety, increased confidence and you feel empowered every day to keep on keeping on.
I hope that this short blog brings you some inspiration to make the choice to step out of your comfort zone and pursue your dreams and passion. Embrace the idea of living each day with a growth mindset to improve and learn every day. You just never know what amazing things the Universe has in store for you when you take the leap to overcome your fears, keep looking forward, believe in yourself and live out your purpose!!
Certified Equine Assisted Learning Facilitator