Caring for your mental health is essential when it comes to maintaining a balanced life. Counseling services can be beneficial when it comes to overcoming mental obstacles, and opting to work with a mental health professional that practices equine therapy can be especially helpful.
Here are two lessons that you will be able to learn from the horses used during equine therapy sessions, and some simple ways these lessons can be incorporated into your life in the future.
1. The identification of your feelings.
One of the things you may struggle with is the ability to properly identify your feelings. Before you can begin to process your emotions and work through mental obstacles, it's imperative that you get in touch with your feelings. Using horses as a tool, a mental health professional can give you the opportunity to learn how to better identify what you are feeling at any given time.
Horses are sensitive to the emotions of the humans around them, and they react accordingly. By observing the way a horse moves and reacts to your presence, you can better identify how you are feeling. If you approach a horse in anger, he or she will likely become obstinate. If you are anxious, the horse will become skittish. When you see your own emotions reflected in the behavior of a horse, they become easier to process because they are outside of yourself.
Dealing with your emotions without the assistance of a horse will become easier over time as you engage in equine therapy sessions.
2. The ability to set and respect boundaries.
Many people experience difficulties in their life because they are unable to either set boundaries for themselves or respect the boundaries of others. Working with horses can be a great way to expose these issues, and help you work through your own boundary-related issues.
If you don't respect a horse's boundaries, he or she will act out in an attempt to establish personal space and respect. You cannot be overly controlling with a horse and expect to receive cooperation in return, just as you cannot control another human and expect the relationship to go smoothly. If you have a hard time setting your own boundaries, a horse can help you learn to be more assertive.
You can begin with something as small as defining your personal space and incorporating this into your interactions with humans.
Equine therapy can be a fun and effective way to help you learn valuable lessons about yourself, and it can help you overcome challenges that make relationships with others difficult at times.
For a mental health counselor, contact an office such as Dr. Stephen Brown & Associates.