And just like that, I find myself headlong into a new adventure – right here without so much as a moving a mile. Grateful for the opportunity, I dove into the deep end and now I’m in.
- Define Success Specifically. Today my goals were threefold: do not get hurt, do not lose a horse, do not get fired. Success!
- Bring Extra Socks and/or Footwear. When your job involves “walker” in it, your feet are going to matter. While I didn’t remember to bring my back up shoes (paddock boots), I sure was glad that all my cycles around the sun had taught me to bring extra socks. When I had a blister from my bean boots while still mid-way thru horse #1, I sure was glad I could go to put on the extra pair (both socks) on my foot with the blister. Problem solved!
- Don’t Use the Boss’s Office as your Locker. Oops! Bad call on my part to somehow assume that it made sense to put my personal items in La Jefe’s office. A corrective comment was issued to me along the lines of “not letting the others think I was sneaking in and out of the office” – and that lesson was learned. Boom.
- Remember how to sit and wait, without playing on the phone. Much to my surprise, there’s a good bit of “waiting for the horse to come back” in this new gig. An opportunity to just sit still, be and not fidget. Not easy, but great to practice.
- Above all, the animals teach you the power of the energy you project. Wow. I won’t lie, I had at least 3 pretty fully terrifying moments with 3 of the horses I walked. It’s quite amazing how powerless I felt standing next to the animals who I’m much, much more comfortable being on top of. The moment they knew I was scared, we were in trouble… and then it was up to me to breathe deep, calm down and convey confidence – on the drop of a dime. No small task and pretty darn exhausting. Just the process of forcibly shutting off the adrenaline is a really hard and challenging task.
More about the journey to get here, the day, the tasks, the dynamics and the players as I find time. My goal is to capture at least a little bit of the growth, day by day, but now – to sleep!
Wish me luck – I need it!