How to Invite the Student to Drink the Horse’s Water

Categories: Blog, blog Sep 15, 2019

A friend of mine, I’ll call him Kirby, has mentioned this phrase to me quite a few times, “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” I think a good compliment to this phrase is, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.”

These resonate with one another, right? 

I mean, if you really want to learn something, you learn. If you are really thirsty, you drink. But until you’re ready, no amount of offered knowledge or well-intended help can be of any service to you because you don’t value it. To paraphrase another saying that comes to mind, “Swine cannot appreciate pearls.” 

Anyway, I’m bringing this up because if you are reading this, there is a good chance you have come to a point in your life where you place a high value on strength and health. Or maybe you’re a trainer, teacher, doctor, therapist, healer, or simply a compassionate person that wants to help other people and you’re reading this to find ways to convince the horse to drink the darn water. 

If you’re here because you think your body is broken, you need to know that it is not. You cannot break the unbreakable. 

If you’re here because you value health and strength, you need to know that you are health and strength. 

If you’re here because you want to help someone else, all you have to do is prove to them what I just said above. You have to show them how wonderful their design is; how wonderful they are. That sounds easy, right? It’s a lot simpler than you think. 

Buckle up, I want to show you how to convince the horse he is thirsty. 

People tend to settle for things. They settle for their circumstances and they settle for surface, shallow knowledge that they don’t really own. They live in “settle” mode. They aren’t hungry to learn because they’ve learned to settle for having no hope of change or they simply know there is no way to change because they know things they don’t know. 

Yes, I know that is confusing. But what I’m trying to say is that people often have head knowledge (shallow knowledge that may or may not be true) yet they have no heart knowledge. Heart knowledge would be deeper, experiential knowledge that was actually owned, tried and proven.  

Sometimes all that is needed to snap a person out of settle mode and make them thirsty is to offer a paradigm shift in the form of truth. Simply telling a person the truth can shatter their current lens and give them fresh eyes to see hope. 

Here are some powerful truths I’ve come across. These may be all it takes to interrupt a person’s shallow knowledge or false beliefs:  

“You are not broken,” 

“Your body can heal.” 

“You are not fragile.” 

“Pain does not mean physical damage.” 

“You are wonderfully made.” 

“You are loved.” 

Often times, hearing the truth for the first time, or from the right voice, is all it takes to help a person to learn how to change their circumstances or allow their bodies to heal. 

Other times you may need to follow the truth with an experience. If you can tell a person the truth and then allow them to experience the truth in their own body, you’ve now given them an experience they will have to wrestle with. This is what makes experiential learning so powerful; it builds heart knowledge. 

For example, if a person has been in pain for years, perhaps you could encourage them with the truth and then have them Press RESET and experience the truth. Or, simply help them discover they can do a movement they thought they would never do again. You can help create an interruption in their thinking by giving them a RESET that changes the information in their nervous system, thus allowing them to move better, or easier with less pain. 

I’ve seen the paradigm facial flush (a dumbfounded look) on thousands of faces by now and it never gets old. 

Basically, you help a person discover how wonderful their design is by telling them the truth and then inviting them to experience it. Then, you simply let them reason all of that out. At the very least, you’ll help them realize they may not be stuck in a body that hurts or won’t move the way they want to. At the very most, you may help them discover that they were created to be strong, healthy, happy, and loved - the ultimate freedom. 

Anyway, I just wanted to share this with you. We may be able to help the student realize he is ready to learn. We may even be able to help ourselves when we stumble around in our own shallow thoughts and begin to settle on things that simply aren’t true. 

Just to review: We are wonderfully made. We are not stuck. We are not broken. We are strong. We are made for joy. We can even test it and experience it and truly know that this is true. 

Comments (4)

  1. Sandy Gross:
    Sep 19, 2019 at 06:46 PM

    This was a fantastic read. I plan to paraphrase this for my high school football players I meet with on Thursdays. It’s week three, they’re tired, the pressure of school is hitting, and they have a two hour bus ride tomorrow to their away game. This story will help inspire them to go out there and express their amazing selves. They are amazing kids! Sometimes they just need to be reminded of that fact. Thanks for this perspective.


    1. Tim Anderson:
      Sep 27, 2019 at 09:58 PM

      Thanks so much for sharing this, Sandy!


  2. Adrian:
    Sep 26, 2019 at 04:07 AM

    As a personal trainer & psychologist, I found your words deeply powerful, truthfully made, and also useful. Your system is consistent, and the physical exercises you propose are one of the expressions of what seems like a practical philosophy, of the kind of those ethical systems that some Greek thinkers proposed. In addition, and unlike many "success" preachers whose speeches seem copied and repeated endlessly, and point to superficial values, your words seem to emerge from another type of journey, which implies a valuable inner connection. Thank you for your generosity in sharing your knowledge. Greetings from Argentina!


    1. Tim Anderson:
      Sep 27, 2019 at 10:00 PM

      Thank you for sharing your thoughts with me, Adrian. I do appreciate it! And, greetings back to you from North Carolina!


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