The horses have moved fields a lot this year and for various reasons are now on their 4th field move in just 7 months. It got me thinking about the effect of this on them; how do they cope with it, do they mind? Recently an old school friend mentioned that she was moving home after 25 years. She said her motive for moving (only a few miles away) was so that she and her husband didn’t become stagnant and inflexible. I loved this attitude and I reflected on what I’ve observed and learned from the horses in this respect.

I’ve noticed that for the horses, moving around helps them to stay engaged and alert to their surroundings. A new field brings new challenges. They need to raise their awareness and be mindful of where the rabbit and badger holes are, be aware of what dangers might be around, work out where the water and sheltered spots are. It keeps them attentive to their surroundings in a way that is stimulating and healthy. A different field also brings fresh rewards of new grasses and herbs, much more forage and a different environment to interface with.

I’ve been wondering about change in my own life and how I can often resist change, but how it nearly always brings something fresh and exciting with it. Observing the horses, it seems that they relish it. When they enter a fresh field they usually kick up their legs with excitement and willingly go through the gate, galloping around for a while, enjoying new pastures, so to speak!

Perhaps lack of change is the thing to be resisted more than change? I think it’s easy to become stuck in a rut and cling on to the known even if it’s no longer stimulating or beneficial. I can see how easy it is to slip into stuckness and inflexibility. Like a familiar pair of old slippers! Or a tepid bath, bringing neither real pleasure nor too uncomfortable to get out.

Watching the horses cope with change, I can see from their behaviour that they don’t look back at where they came from, they eagerly embrace new pastures and when they come to return to their main field in October, they will relish that with fresh enthusiasm, as if it is new to them. And in a way it will be, things will have changed, new rabbit holes will have appeared, different plants will be available, the grass will be long again.

This blog is an invitation to have a ponder on your own life, and see if any aspects of it feel stuck or stagnant. Would change bring a freshness? Are you stuck in semi comfort? It may not be just physical change where this applies, our attitudes and thought processes can become stuck and inflexible too. What might healthy change look like for you and does it feel exciting?

Are pastures new calling you?