Claiming Our Space

It is the nature of the masculine to push boundaries.  It is the nature of the feminine  to set them. We humans, both men and women, have  overrun Mother Earth with our masculine energy and we need to rebalance it if we’re not to continue to burn Her out and all our crumbling human systems with Her.    The work begins with the feminine in all of us saying no to “more” and saying yes to healthy sustainable limits. With all my clients, but with girls especially,  we start by Claiming Our Space.

I recently had a vivacious 10 yr old girl in my arena.  She was all lovely innocence;  long and lithe, with blonde curly hair and blue eyes.  She was eager to play and chose my beautiful gelding, Sun, as her playmate.  As it turns out he was a perfect partner for her.  Sun loves people and is very playful. He’s also runs mostly masculine energy.  He’s always looking for and testing the boundaries.

She began walking with him side by side at liberty; something Sun does everyday with me. In less than a minute he had wrapped his body around her, engulfing her. I had never witnessed anything like it and was baffled. She kept walking, seemingly unaware with no presence, no boundaries, no life force!   This beautiful lively creature of just a few minutes ago was gone; she seemed oblivious to this 1000 lb horse claiming her.

I immediately separated them, put a lead on him, and taught her how to helicopter the end of the rope to ‘claim space’. She began walking with him again, twirling his lead and giving herself a 5’ diameter of safe space. In less than 25’ she went from ghost to the vivacious young girl I had met outside the ring. When I asked her at the end of the session what was most significant for her, she replied, “I realized that if I could keep a 1000 lb horse off of me, I didn’t have to put up with my 6’5” brothers!  The implications of this insight are staggering!

Energy awareness  is a new frontier in human development…at least for us overly civilized and citified humans. It has been and is the natural way of aboriginal tribes throughout all time…for they have not lost their animalness. Setting energetic boundaries is the first step in creating healthy relationships…with humans and animals.

It’s fascinating to watch animals meet, greet and set boundaries with each other. They continuously read each other, sensing what is and what they need to do to stay safe AND be in relationship. Jefe, my 15 lb Havanese, accomplishes it by merely curling one upper lip when Ruben, a visiting 85 lb German Shepherd, gets closer than three feet from him. Ruben, immediately senses Jefe’s claim and backs off. Only then will Jefe play with him. Reba, my boss mare, sets an energy field around her that no one challenges. And, if they should, she reminds them of her space with the slightest flick of one ear.

The good leader, both animal and human, knows just how to best enter a situation and join up with it so that boundaries are clear AND a relationship is established before doing anything else.

Most humans, energetically speaking, have really bad manners. Our greetings are mostly autonomic, role dependent, assumption filled and ritualized. Some, when first meeting my herd, eagerly thump them on the face not noticing the horses wincing with each thump. Some use baby talk, squeal in delight,  and try to hug them. This causes my horses to either play dominance games or get out of claustrophobia’s way. Other people move to dominance immediately and begin pushing the horse around or barking orders to the dogs.

The animals are boggled by our behaviors because they’re unrelated to current reality. They have no idea what to make of the chaotic energies greeting them. Which is why the first activity in my workshops or private sessions is teaching people how to Claim Space. Simply put, it’s owning and honoring where you stand.

Energetically speaking, it requires awareness of:

  • ourselves (our bodily sensations, emotions and our thoughts),
  • our connection to earth and to whatever we consider the Greater Whole  (eg. God, Spirit, Nature, or other Meta Systems.
  • our connection with the animals, other humans and the local environment in any situation

Here’s how I prepare for every encounter with a human or an animal and what I teach my clients to do to claim their space:

1. Breathe … to come into the present moment

  1. Draw your breathe in lovingly: feel your body being filled with your breath
  2. Allow it to flow out, relaxing as you empty

2. Ground … to build awareness of body and connection to Earth

  1. Place your attention in your feet… feeling them inside and out
  2. Feel the physical touching of your feet to the earth
  3. Notice what you notice  (eg. bodily sensations, feelings, thoughts, internal colors and or pictures)
  4. Become like a tree, reaching your roots from your feet down to earth’s core.
  5. Feel for the profound stability you are when connected to Mother Earth

3. Align … to empower yourself by aligning your energetic system with Highest Good    and Mother Earth

  1. Feel or Imagine (if sensing is energy is new to you) golden, warm, loving light coming from Above
  2. Feel/Imagine it flowing into the top of your head and through your body
  3. Notice its flow through each part of your body
  4. Feel/Imagine it flowing into and through your taproot into Mother Earth
  5. Allow yourself to stay in its flow for as long as it is nourishing to you

5. Bubble … to establish your energetic boundaries so that others can know and                       respect them

  1. Feel/imagine an energy bubble surrounding your body about arm’s length out in all directions
  2. Feel/Imagine filling it with your Aligned Energy. (From step 4)
  3. Notice what you notice

Try this before an important meeting, or with someone who tends to “knock you off your pins,”  with your animals, or in crowds if you tend to feel everyone else’s energy. My clients tell me that when they do this they:

  • react less to others emotions
  • stay better focused on their intentions and goals
  • aren’t exhausted at the end of a hectic day in corporate buildings
  • can better see ‘what now’ in each moment

Let me know what you notice  :-)  Happy Trails,   Peggy

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©2012 Peggy Gilmer. All Rights Reserved.

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