Next in our Meet the Herd series is Commands Lil’ Cricket, or simply Cricket, as she is known around the barn. Take a bow Cricket…..
I first met Cricket in 2009 during my training as an Equine Guided Development facilitator. Cricket was then part of a very special therapy team headed by my teacher, Sandra Wallin of Chiron’s Way. The heart connection I felt with Cricket was instant. I can still recall my first day of training, sitting on the hill overlooking the horse enclosure and feeling a distinct tug of my heart-strings when my spirit met Cricket’s for the first time.
Throughout my training Cricket was a gentle and masterful teacher, an eloquent dance partner, and a steady mount; always holding sacred space for me as I traversed the many layers of my own healing journey. The final step in my training program was to plan and facilitate a two-day workshop. One participant, I recall, referred to Cricket as the “forgettable horse” – in other words, there is no bravado, she’s unobtrusive, soft and steady. But don’t let that fool you – forgettable she’s not! Soft and steady she may be, but she is a Master – executing her every move with laser precision. A perfectly timed nicker will stop you in your tracks – instantly breaking old unconscious behaviors and brining you into the here and now. A deep and soulful gaze from her big brown eyes lets you know that it’s safe to express your emotions. And a gentle nudge to help you let go of anything you are needlessly hanging on to will set you free from the emotional ties that bind.
As a member of Wisteria Acres’ therapy team, Cricket’s gifts are many. Here are just a few
~ SLOW & STEADY WINS THE RACE~
As our daily lives seem to be steadily picking up speed, Cricket reminds us to slow down. This frenzied pace we keep is a needless expenditure of energy, and we become so focused on the ‘doing’ that we forget how to just ‘be’. Cricket can still cover a lot of ground in a day, but her pace is slow and steady, deliberate and mindful. When was the last time you stopped to really take in your surroundings? Cricket invites you to put down your Iphone, close your computer, turn the television off and let her introduce you to the art of Wu Wei – the art of doing nothing. Imagine yourself sitting amidst lush green pastures basking in the noon day sun, feeling the gentle breeze on your cheek, your breath synchronized with hers as you hear the glorious sounds of the natural world. Sometimes the best action is inaction. Cricket offers this quote by Lao Tzu – Do you have the patience to wait till your mud settles and the water becomes clear? Can you remain unmoving till the right action arises by itself? From that still place, clarity arises.
~ QUIET CONFIDENCE~
Cricket is the only horse I have ever met who is able stop Romeo in his tracks. No ear-pinning or threatening behaviour required – just a fully embodied quiet confidence. As I shared with you in the last newsletter, Romeo is spirited, playful and likes to push the boundaries of life. Nowhere is this more evident than when he’s out with the herd – he’s like the little boy in the school yard that thinks it’s fun to annoy the other children, just for kicks! But one look from Cricket and his antics cease. Their first meeting was a jaw-dropper for me. Romeo was at liberty in the arena when we led Cricket out for a first introduction. As Romeo caught sight of this new herd member from a distance, you could see the mischievous glint in his eye that seemed to shout out “Frosh week!” as he strutted toward the gate to start the initiation process. But as Cricket entered the gate, Romeo froze in place. His mischievous look turned to a respectful curiosity. I could tell he was taken aback, as was I. He remained unmoving until Cricket advanced a few steps, inviting him in. Then the two came together in a soft ceremonial embrace – their necks curled around each other as if greeting a long lost love. Cricket teaches us how to embody a confidence that does not require a show of force.
~ PASSIVE LEADERSHIP~
A passive leader is one who is dependable, quietly confident, consistent, with a willingness not to use force. Leadership is vitally important to horses. In the wild, they look to a leader to keep them safe, fed and watered. But a leader, in the equine and human world, can take on many different styles. There is the belligerent leader who reigns by fear-driven tactics. Or there is the ever dependable, quietly confident, consistent leader who leads by example, rather than force. As we have already come to know, Cricket has beautifully mastered the element of quiet confidence. She is also consistently consistent. Her message is always the same; her stance unwavering. The rest of the herd knows what to expect and how to expect it. As animals of prey, the element of surprise is understandably not favoured! Consistency + dependability = safety. What are your leadership strengths? Whether you are a leader of a large organization or leader of your own beautiful life, teaming up with Cricket will help you to discover and refine your own natural gifts.
~ LOVE ~
Love really does make the world go ’round. Cricket’s pet name is the ‘Love Bug’. Her kind and soft demeanor, and the way she bats her beautiful big brown eyes cannot help but touch your heart. She reminds us to always act from a heart-centered place. Trauma, hurt, judgement, rejection, and betrayal can embitter us and leave our hearts imprisoned. Where do you need more love in your life? The Law of Attraction shows us that what we put out, we attract more of. Cricket reminds us that it starts with self-love and invites you to take time to nurture yourself – spend some time in nature letting it fill your heart and feed your soul with natural wonders. From that place, we can offer more love to the world around us.
What is the next step on your evolutionary path? What is showing up in your life right now that signals you have more work to do in that area? Do you need to slow down and allow your mud to settle in order to gain some clarity in your life? Are you being called to step up as a leader? Or perhaps you are ready for a little more love in your life?
Cricket awaits you.