Speaking Cow Lingo

Speaking Cow Lingo

I clipped a piece of video for you from my “Cow Characteristics” video in my Cow Class II Program. In this segment, I talk about ‘speaking cow lingo’.

Podcast: How To Be Extraordinary

Podcast: How To Be Extraordinary

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been observing riders who are absolutely killing it… recreational riders, teachers, coaches, and competitive riders.

I’ve observed 3 things in all of them make them stand out, and inspire me.

I hope becoming more clear about these 3 attributes inspires you, too.

And the best news is, all three are yours for the taking! You have to do them for yourself consistently.


Hello, my friends.

I’ve been getting a lot of requests for podcasts, so here you go.

The quest for learning and excelling… and being happy… and helping our horses… and providing well for their happiness… can be fun… and exasperating all at the same time!

And believe me, I’m right in there with you digging deep for these things in my own life in general, and with my horse.

I’ve always been fascinated with the human, horse, and human/horse potential together. It drives my passions.

It’s exciting for me to uncover even the simplest of ideas or tools that we absolutely CAN DO that open up wonderful doors for us. Of course, when we work on ourselves, it immediately helps our relationship with our horse.

Over the past few weeks, I’ve been observing riders who are absolutely killing it… recreational riders, teachers, coaches, and competitive riders.

I’ve observed 3 things in all of them make them stand out… and inspire me.

I hope becoming more clear about these 3 attributes inspires you, too.

And the best news is, all three are yours for the taking! You have to do them for yourself consistently.

#1. They have a drive for excellence for its own sake, not for recognition from the outside world.

They have tremendous personal passion for what they do.

These riders LOVE their job with a horse, whether it’s showing, teaching, or training. And they want to be fabulous at it so they can experience the excellence of it for themselves.

Just the excitement of getting out there, doing it, and seeing how good they can get thrills them.

They see standards set by others as inspiration and something to strive for… and maybe even exceed… but it’s not about beating others. It’s to see what’s possible for themselves.

They’re immersed in their own job with their own horse.

Every day is an adventure and an opportunity to learn and excel.

#2. They have the ability to focus on the process and not the results.

They’re all about the horse and the truths about communicating with a horse.

How does a horse understand?

How can I read my horse better?

How can I do better to build their confidence and show them what I want?

These riders love learning and measure everything as compared to themselves and how they’re doing with their horse… not to other people and their horses.

#3. They never give up.

And while these riders absolutely DO have their vulnerable moments, they have learned that their journey is an awesome one.

There is nothing innately lacking in them.

They have learned that HOPE is a verb, not a noun. They will find a way around or through a challenge. In fact, sometimes, the harder it gets, the more they love the challenge.

Challenges and setbacks are to be expected in their eyes.

In fact, problems are their greatest sources of insight about exactly where they should improve, which brings us back around full-circle to the love of excellence for its own sake and focusing on the process, not the results.

What’s interesting is that sometimes their extraordinary success is almost a surprise because they’ve been so consumed by what they’re doing!

So here’s a path to adopting these three characteristics for yourself.

Tap in first and foremost to your own heart.

Make sure you love what you’re doing for its own sake. If you don’t, change it.

Keep reaching one step at a time because you love what you do so much that you can’t wait to learn and do it more.

Know that you’re always enough. Your personal worth is not measured by how you ride a horse!

Your journey is your greatest source of joy for you!

Most of all, have a blast.

Leave a comment and let me know what you think!

If the Cattle Get Tangled on the Cut

If the Cattle Get Tangled on the Cut

I just returned from the NCHA Futurity. 

When I saw these two cuts. I thought they would be great examples of how you can make the best decisions possible on the cut if cattle threaten to stay together and ‘get tangled up.’

Watch for three things: 

1. How the cutters both steer and move their horse amid the threatening situations
2. How the cutter moves (or not) with the cow to be cut
3. How the cutter is aware of the cattle or cow that need to be cleared.

3 Ways to Survive Change

3 Ways to Survive Change

Did you ever notice how we all crave for things to be certain? We avoid change like the plague. We love thinking that FINALLY, we found the way it’s going to be … I like it and I don’t want any change.


Funny, the most dramatic case of this is my life was when our son Zane was an infant. I was willing to do whatever he needed, of course, but it kept changing. As a young Mom, I would think, “Ok … I’ve got it now. He wakes up once a night at 2:00 and then goes back to bed until 6:00. I can plan around that.” Sure … that was good for about 2 days. And then it changed. I kept trying to figure it out.

But now, years later, I finally understand that things are always changing, even when we don’t realize it.

In our horse lives, when we first started riding, we just knew what we knew at that time. We thought we’d always ride the same horse … always be in the same barn … always go to the same shows.

But then, things changed. Our beloved horse got arthritis. The trainer moved. We were forced to take a break because of an accident, or financial reasons … or whatever.

And then we were on unsteady ground again.

As I continue to learn … and study great mentors in personal performance and personal growth, I have come to understand that those who continue to excel …even through change, have some things in common:

  • They too are uncomfortable with change. But herein lies the difference: they don’t resist the change. They trust themselves and they trust their journey. They might say something to themselves like, “This is hard. I’m really sad … or maybe mad … but I’m strong.” So, when the trainer moves or you move away from your horsey friends, you know you will survive … and somehow find your way.
  • Those who flow best with change believe there is some good that will come through the difficulty. Maybe they don’t know what it is, but they truly do believe it exists. They also know that only time and a willingness to see things that way will tell the tale. They don’t know how things will turn out … but again they trust their journey. This is a strong personal belief of mine. It has gotten me through some tough times in my personal life … or in my horse training life when a horse got sore … or a show didn’t go well for me … just to name a few.
  • Next, those who flow best with change not only believe something good will come to pass … they actively look for it. For me, maybe not being able to ride one of my favorite horses, helped me see the good things in one of the other horses … things I had missed. For you, perhaps if you have to stop riding for a while, you can use that time to travel to big shows and watch … something you’ve wanted to do for years.

Yes … change is really hard … and it’s sad sometimes … and it almost always seems to kind of suck. But, after you grieve a bit (and give yourself time for that) … tell yourself that you are strong. Yes, you can survive. And yes, there is a gift in the misfortune. And when you’re ready … yes, go searching for it.

That’s what I have for you today. Scroll down and leave a comment for me. I would love that.

Take a Hold

Take a Hold

Have you ever wondered what someone means when they say, “Get a hold of that cow!” You might think, “What in the world?????”

When a trainer or a helper says this, he or she means to become more aware of your mental and physical connection to the cow in that moment. It’s like saying, “Above all else, zone in on the cow.” That’s because beyond all of the technical things we do with our legs and seat, we always need to relate them to the cow first and foremost.

Sometimes as cutting horse riders, we become so wound up on getting the cow cut, putting our hand down, keeping it down, sitting deep in the saddle, using a herdside or cowside leg … the list goes on … that the cow becomes secondary as it moves around in front of us. We’re too busy multi-tasking on all the other stuff to be intently focused on the cow.

But actually, the connection to the cow should come first.

It’s analogous to playing tennis. You have to keep your eye on the ball to play tennis or else you won’t be in the game very long. Your connection to the tennis ball is key.

In cutting it’s keeping your eye on the cow. It’s the same in regards to your effectiveness as a rider as you work a cow. The more connected to a cow you are, the more accurate and purposeful you will be as you ride. The difference between tennis and cutting is that we don’t always have to be that focused. Our horse will cover for us most of the time if we don’t laser beam in on the cow.

Here are three ways to get more connected to a cow:

1. Make getting and staying focused to the cow your first priority. Have a phrase you say to yourself repeatedly that connects you to the cow.

The thought “Watch the cow” is a good one, and of course essential. But by nature, the word “Watch” is a little passive. There’s nothing technically wrong with that idea. But if you tell yourself to “Take a hold!” … now you’ve got some energy going on! Boom! “Take a hold of that cow!”

2. Be purposeful regarding the angle you take to stop the cow. Go for more than just position on the cow (although that’s a good starting point). Go for moving up into the “energy” of the cow at a slight angle to the cow.

3. “Read the cow” in all you do, especially with your seat. Go beyond the mechanics of how to sit. Use the mechanics of your seat for the purpose of connecting with your horse and stopping the cow. Let the purpose of stopping the cow tell your body when to sit. Take “a hold of the cow” in the stop with a dramatic seat drop.