We brought the Suffolk colts home yesterday. I think it's safe to say that they worked their way into our hearts pretty quickly. The sweet and mild mannered young'uns were very good about getting into the truck. They have been outside and not handled much, so we really didn't know what we were up against. They don't know what they are up against in the near future either.
Disciple is what they are going to be up against, and the class is already in session. A boot camp of sorts. Right now the trailer is their barracks where they are learning the rudimentary tasks of getting used to wearing a halter and being hitched with a rope and to stand in place. When they learn that discipline, then they will move in to their stalls. They will learn about being led, how to get along with new horses, and what their new master expects of them. The faster they can learn these disciplines, the faster they can move onto bigger and better things. This includes doing the draft work they were bred to be able to do.
We hope they will be well equipped and prepared for the work ahead of them, so that they can find enjoyment in it. We can see already that they have different personalities that they were born with which may affect how they "lean into" their work.
Structure and routine are going to be so important for the colts. The consistency in their feeding and watering routine will help them grow well physically. The daily lessons in being led and spoken to will ingrain in them trust and the ability to follow and obey their trainer. Sometimes I think horses and people are not that much different. If we learn to accept the lessons that discipline has to offer, we too can move on to do those things we were created to do.
One of the things I aspire to do is to build more and more good and helpful habits into the routine we already have in place. Implementing those things in our lives that help us move towards our goals and aspirations on a daily basis. I was inspired and encouraged to do this by listening and reading what the author James Clear has to say in his book Atomic Habits- A book I highly recommend reading. He gives helpful ideas about how to create a more productive and disciplined life little by little- adding good habits into your life and making it harder to carry out habits you would like to get rid of. Here's an example: put your tv in the closet if you want to cut down on tv time. It will make you think twice about watching if you have to get it out and plug it in.
Another thing that helps to keep us on track are lists. Jim has always been a list maker. He used to have a little book he kept in his back pocket, especially when he had a lot of lumber orders to keep track of. Now he has a clipboard he keeps by his chair. Lists help keep us on task and focused. Our daughter Trudy introduced me to bullet journaling and I love it. It's a blank book made especially to be filled with your plans and notes and to do lists. I may be too much like a kindergartener, but I love to color in a box when I have completed a task. It takes planning and intentionality, but I like to prepare at the beginning of the month so I can check off the box each day after I complete the desired task. The thought of having unmarked spaces if I don't complete my task drives me on to get that task done, even if I don't want to. I've got a long way to go, but I have found that the more I complete my desired tasks daily, the easier life gets in those areas. Areas that I am working on are exercise, cleaning tasks, correspondence, and memorization. And to get in the habit of writing a blog posts every week. I sure get a sense of satisfaction when I push myself to be discipled. I am hoping that the colts will somehow have a sense of satisfaction as they learn to" pull their weight" around here as well.
If you are interested here is a link to James Clear's free newsletter called 3-2-1 Thursday. I look forward to reading it every Thursday.
Here's a link to the book Atomic Habits if you are interested:
Here's a link to the bullet journal I am using if you are interested: