Gratitude: Shift from expectation to appreciation and witness your relationship transform

Gratitude is one of the fastest ways to generate happiness, both for the giver and the receiver. Cultivating and expressing appreciation for even the tiniest detail can have a dramatic and positive effect.

How often do you give thanks to your equine friends? No other species of animal has physically and emotionally carried humans throughout history the way the horse has. Their selfless service is something we can learn from, be in awe of, and be grateful for.

The irony is that we think we are training horses to be better horses, but the reality is that they are teaching us how to be better humans. If you look at your relationship with a horse as a metaphor for all relationships in your life, it becomes clear that the horse you see is the horse you get. The life you see is the life you get, the relationship you see is the relationship you get, etc. If you see the magnificence in a horse and focus on that, you will watch the horse blossom in front of you. If you see radiance in another being, a partner, a child, a co-worker or a friend, that’s what will be reflected back to you. It is a universal law that what you put out is what you get back.

Gratitude also has the extra special quality of a generous spirit that goes with it. When you feel grateful, it is self-generated, and there is no requirement for any kind of reciprocation. It is simply giving thanks for the sake of giving thanks because someone or something has touched your heart and it feels good to experience it and express it.
If you are lucky enough to have a horse in your life or to meet a horse in your travels, practice tuning into all of your senses and feeling gratitude fully in your body. Give thanks for how they have inspired you. No detail is too small. If you love their furry ears, their smell, the sound of their nicker, the feel of their soft breath, their beauty, their wildness, the kindness in their eyes or the wisdom you experience in their presence, share it.

Send this feeling of appreciation to them and thank them for reminding you of whatever you needed to be reminded of. Breath deeply and sink into your heart knowing you are safe to express from that honest and vulnerable place. Connect your heart to the horse’s heart and come fully into the present moment, knowing the truth that there is much to be grateful for.

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