"Keep your horse between your hand and your leg"
Horses are herd animals. Because (in their minds) there is a constant threat of predators, they are most comfortable when they are moving forward. Many a green rider has had this lesson pounded into them - if a horse is upset and you force them to stop they will either A) Buck or B) Rear. The best thing to do is KEEP MOVING FORWARD to work out the issue.
However, there is a difference between "motion" and "running like hellfire". A rider can't chase the horse faster and faster and expect the frenzy to whip away all the horse's anxiety.
A common phrase (with my trainer, anyway) is to "keep your horse between your hand and your leg." Your leg is a cue to move forward; your hand is a cue to stop. When a horse is balanced in between your hand and your leg (not running, and not at a standstill) he will be at his most comfortable state of mind. He will be able to process information, be flexible and adaptable to any challenges you present him, completely alert, using his body effectively, and - most importantly - content. A happy horse is a good horse.
In my life I feel like I'm alternately at a full stop, and running like hellfire. My heart and my brain are in constant conflict. I know what I want - what I need - in my life. I need creativity; I need writing. I need God. I need my family. And I need Stuart. My heart has made up its mind - now my brain just needs to figure out how to realize these dreams in a world full of challenges and possibilities.
- Finding a job in a creative industry is tricky and takes time
- I need to find financial security
- Stuart is American, and legalities are ___ (insert fun word of your choice here)
- I don't know what I want to do as a career
It doesn't have to be settled now. My stress comes from my impatience. Wanting to have everything laid out and settled within a week. I've been racing forward in spurts, rushing to try and get to a place where I can relax, but I've been burning myself out. I get tired and frustrated that I'm not accomplishing things, and come to a full stop - only to realize I've wasted time and mindlessly race forward trying to fork out writing samples and finished projects so I can check them off my list.
Writing doesn't work like that. Life doesn't work like that. I need to find my happy place, where I can balance my ambitions with coming to terms with where I am at present. Moving forward, but at a comfortable, sustainable pace.
Turtle. (I threw out that word in a conversation with Stuart. He asked if it meant anything. I said of course, while frantically inventing possible meanings for the word "turtle" that didn't involve the Master of Disguise or Finding Nemo or Austin Powers. ("Turtle" is mentioned in all those movies. Randomly.)) In this context, it's meaning relates to the Tortoise and the Hare's race. We'll not get into the difference between Turtles and Tortoises, other than the fact "turtle" is more fun to say. Randomly.