If I heard it once, I’ve heard it a thousand times from Ray Hunt. He said ‘make the wrong thing difficult and the right thing easy’. Then he said ‘but don’t make the wrong thing impossible’. Well you learn from making mistakes. It’s that simple.” – Buck Brannaman
I too have heard Ray Hunt say this…I too found myself making the wrong thing close to impossible. It is so easy to put attitude and emotion into the things we don’t want horses to do. Sometimes in doing that we accidentally make things way worse than they would have been if we left emotion out of it.
We learn by making mistakes…when I learned to walk, I fell down a lot. I did not get in trouble when I fell down. The act of falling down was enough to help me learn that staying on two feet was better. I learned. It was a process.
In working with horses, I try to do the same thing. Just allow the mistake to be that, a mistake. I find that this helps my horse to think, to try and ultimately, learn to learn. And that’s what it is all about, getting my horse to learn and encouraging him to keep offering up a try. Because if my horse will try, together we can do anything!