Although my Acumen Certification Training program keeps me busy mentoring other hypnotherapists, I still find time to see an occasional client. When “Patsy” called for an appointment, I knew this was someone I wanted to schedule for myself. Why? Because she said the magic word… “Cowgirl.”
Patsy, in her forties, wanted to use hypnotherapy to overcome her fear of riding her horse. A friend who had used our services to rid herself of insomnia referred her to us.
In the interview I learned she had “always” had a horse or horses, had never experienced a riding injury other than bumps and scratches from occasionally being thrown, and didn’t know anyone personally who had been seriously hurt. Yet for the past three years she could not make herself get back into the saddle. The harder she tried, the more scared she felt.
I also learned that three years ago, she had gone through a divorce. Her husband had left her for another woman and had, in her words, “sold my house right out from under me.
Patsy then added, “Something like that really throws you!”
She was in a current relationship but told me there were “issues.” After hearing more of the (unpleasant) details I asked if she could identify a lesson to be learned and she said, “Yes! You can’t trust men!”
What kind of a horse did she own? Yup, you mighta guessed it. A stallion.
It was obvious to me that Patsy’s subconscious mind had formed and built upon some unhealthy associations.
(1) Consider the similarity between “house” and “horse.”
(2) A house had been sold “out from under her.”
(3) She said herself, “Something like that really throws you.”
(4) A new relationship had her convinced that “you can’t trust men.” (Or stallions.)
During hypnosis we applied basic psychology to do some house cleaning on the subconscious level — where feelings are stored, whether they make sense or not. The subconscious will always do its best to keep you safe, but sometimes old stuff gets swept under the carpet and left there. Patsy needed to dust off her fears and tidy up her attitude toward relationships.
After our session she wiped tears from her cheeks, gave me a big cowgirl hug, and said she couldn’t wait to go out and spend the entire afternoon on horseback. (During hypnosis, among other things I had reminded her that her horse deserved quality time with her and that he had been patient long enough.)
Patsy’s parting shot as she left the office was, “He’s going to be so happy to have me back again!”