Charisma Connection

Correct Use of Dominance

Nancy Proulx - Tuesday, September 13, 2016

This is a video I made about 2 yrs ago. I had a hard time releasing this because I don't want it to be misunderstood. It is a dominance exercise. My mare Charisma actually gave me this exercise in a dream. Since this guy was a stallion he was unsocialized. In the wild he would of been kicked out of the herd until he learned how to have manners. It is not about overpowering the horse but about teaching him respect of my space.

It may take a few seconds for the video to start once you hit play.

Wounded Warrior Project

Nancy Proulx - Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Maggie Keller, Katie Macre from Lothlorien Therapeutic Riding Center, Inc., along with a whole bunch of volunteers and me, Nancy Proulx were able to collaborate on a wonderful project this past August. We prepared and presented a pilot program for the Wounded Warrior Project, which is based out of New York City. We were honored to work with some of the America’s finest men and women who keep our country safe. The day’s journey involved non-mounted activities using horses that are meant to help us reconnect to our body’s wisdom. Reconnecting to our body’s wisdom helps keep us safe and connected to life. We build on what horses and nature has to teach us about the ability to be a functional herd and use nonpredatory power. I have to say that these groups of participants were so brave to embrace this work. Not only does it ask us to step into a place of vulnerability of working with these powerful animals but the bravery to reclaim the pieces of ourselves that we have disconnected from. The other amazing process I watched was to see an amazing group of horses step up and switch from therapeutic riding horse to Equine Facilitated Learning teachers. It was almost as if they got the download of the program.

Participants, volunteer, horses and presenters all finished with a wonderful experience, a connection of the heart and a reminder that appreciation is the well that we all drink from.


Nancy Proulx - Sunday, August 21, 2016

The horses have shown me that self -awareness is the foundation of being with horses. It’s important to develop and know ones self. Why? Because the horse will ask, “who are you”, “are you safe to be with” and “can you provide the self- knowledge to support the inner nature of this individual horse”? A horse has the ability to read us like an open book and they have this amazing ability to show us our negative aspects as well as what we have denied in ourselves. If left unconscious it can cause a lot of frustration and miscommunication for both the horse and the person.

Similar to our human relationships we have some horses that we get along with and some that we have resistance with. So does like attract like or do opposites attract? It actually can work both ways. Numerous times I’ve seen people who may own multiple horses. If the horse has a similar personality to the owner they achieved harmony much faster. Their communication fairly is easy to achieve. They both develop a trust and support for each other even if they have to work through a few past programing and training issues. Their other horse, not so much harmony there! Their personalities traits tend to magnify each other. I look at this as a great teaching opportunity for the person. This is where we need to check our ego at the gate and allow the horse to become the teacher. The horse is just asking for us to develop a piece of our self that is denied or undeveloped. A trait that the horse does not possess but the herd had supplied for them. This could be any combination of traits like sensitivity, courage, focus, willfulness, leadership etc.

With my Eponaquest training we use specific exercises with the horses on the ground. The exercises slow things down so you have an embodied feel for the information your body and the horse is giving you. If the communication is strained on the ground I wouldn’t suggest getting on the horses back. Communication, willingness and mutual respect needs to be there or else it opens the door for someone to get hurt. In the past, I was trained to do it the old way of getting on and overpowering the horse with equipment. This, of course, does not build the trust we want from our horse or the ability to see what the dissonance of the relationship is trying to teach us about ourselves. When we have the courage to step into this place of vulnerability of allowing our horse to become our teacher, transformation can happen. We allow space to open to not only truly see yourself, but that of our horse, spouse, co–worker and friend. This is the starting place for developing a deep bond. It comes from being in a place of authenticity.


Nancy Proulx - Monday, July 25, 2016


My niece Aimee Pahl and her horse Xfire. Six months ago he wouldn't allow anyone on his back. Today he is on a three day trail ride with her. So proud of both of you and allowing me to assist you on this journey. It allowed both to open their hearts to more love and a willingness to support each other, removing all tension that restrains the relationship. I see both of them smiling.


It is elementary my dear Watson.

Nancy Proulx - Monday, July 25, 2016


This is Watson a terrier that I visited on a consult this past weekend.His owner called because Watson whom she rescued from the animal shelter a month ago was experiencing separation anxiety. I usually start my work out by getting the owner in touch with her own body wisdom and ask for a message from the body on the situation. She was easily able to get a message from the tension in her arms that she was to lighten up. I did get a feeling from the dog that he just wanted to please his new owner and he had a nice nature about him. I discussed how the owner is contributing to the situation unconsciously. Love without boundaries can become enmeshment, which is unhealthy and very heavy for a person or animal to carry. Both the owners and the dogs boundaries that form autonomy were weak. Enmeshment doesn't allow individual empowerment or a healthy relationship with our self or a higher power. We need to be careful that we don't expect our dog to fill our needs or complete oneself, that only makes for a codependent dog . Many times if you shift this dynamics before it gets programed into the dogs brain and nervous system, you can help the dog to settle and be less reactive. Separation anxiety can decrease and a more balanced relationship ensues.

The Eyes Are Said To Be The Window Of The Soul

Nancy Proulx - Monday, July 25, 2016

The Eyes Are Said To Be The Window Of The Soul

In my early years I thought I knew her. Experiencing small windows of recognition. Because of projections, she still was a stranger , me afraid to know what's there. The journey into the heart so worth it, bringing balance, joy and authenticity. Now when I look in her (I) eye, I see myself. Soul mates to each other. A bond that last for eternity.

The Path to the Horse

Nancy Proulx - Monday, July 25, 2016

Horses are “helping over civilized people reconnect with the wisdom and rhythms of the world.” Linda Kohanov, Riding Between the World.

The over civilized state of being is the world many of us live in. Not only with horses but in our everyday lives. This disconnect puts more value on our rational thinking and learned mental patterns causing us to override our hearts. Leaving us searching and lost in a world of thoughts and trying to figuring things out. The mind that is full of chatter is a place horses run from. The natural vibration of horses reside in a more alpha state of being. Horses have a less verbal more telepathic or sensory way of being. These beautifully sensitive animals can teach us to sense with our whole bodies. This path can teach you to hear from a deeper place within, where you are not as addicted to the technique, but feel the fluidness of the dance. Horses want us to become more empathic and responsive in the moment. It’s not that we throw out all that we have learned about the technique of riding. We learn to simultaneously sense the horse, its emotional, mental and spiritual state along with feeling our own bodies. We feel with the horse, in a sense become the horse. The ability to reconnect and sense our own bodies connects us to our emotions, instincts and intuition. It is in this place of connection with ourself, our original nature, that give us the key to open up and unlock the nature of the horse.

A solid connection to our body and our instincts should be one of the first things we address before we even think about being with horses. Many problems with horses arise because we don’t even know what we are feeling and we unconsciously program or project our issue on to our horses(animals, children etc.). One exercise I found helpful is to spend some time just being with your horse. Sit and sense into your own body. Scan your body. What are you feeling? Is there any frustration, anxiety, joy, excitement? Another question to sense into is “are these my emotions or the horses”? Emotions are contagious! The horse will only magnify and act out what is unconscious in you. The horse is wired to feel into their environment, so make sure you know what you are putting out. This exercise will help you in connecting to your body. Emotions are the gateway to our body and also the language of animals. The difference between a rider and the art of riding is based on clarity of self, this self awareness is the first step.

The Feedback Loop

Nancy Proulx - Sunday, July 24, 2016

I've had a couple people and horses that I've been doing some coaching with that have had their mounts refuse to move forward. First and foremost we check the horses out to make sure there is no pain. In both these horses, work needed to be done on their backs. Once given the all clear we started back to see if the resistance still existed. Even though the physical pain was gone there was something blocking forward movement. Was it coming from the horse or the person? Sometimes we will never know the exact details but in my experience it works as a feedback loop. The horse heals the person and the person heals the horse. In both these cases the people had an unhealthy relationship with their dominant nature. They judged the dominance quality of people as a negative trait. The horses can sense this lack of wholeness in their riders and reacted to it. What does healing look like? Keeping both the horse and the rider present is important. Both these horses were high sensitives and learned to disassociate in order to endure things that stressed them out. Keeping things very slow and making sure that each lesson is embodied and no one is unconsciously pushed to far out of their comfort zone. Each lesson has to be finished with both horse and rider feeling relaxed and confident. For the one horse and rider it meant only walking for two or three weeks. Me supporting both from the ground. Only stepping in to help reinforce safety or the learning curve of the rider on how to use her dominance through the use of her own energy in a non predatory way. We want to teach a horse to have communication with us, but not in a defensive move. Just like people, horses develop coping mechanisms. They develop neuropathways from the brain to the body that cause them to just react. We need to retrain the horse out of it's reactive response, whether it was caused from past pain or bad training. The rider also needs to learn to feel into the horse and respond appropriately. If you have a fear of being bucked off it's programed into your body. Slowly with good support and positive experiences a trust and confidence can build in the rider and horse. They feed off each other in a conscious way. I'm happy to say that both these horses and owners are enjoying each other and the freedom of movement. The horses actually now ask for the permission to move forward and it is with joy.