Horses Transforming Reality TV
Those who read my blog, and watch TV may have noticed a familiar face on today’s episode of The Biggest Loser Transformed! Yes I was thrilled to be invited to facilitate an Equine Assisted Learning segment for the nine contestants. Unlike previous seasons of the show, this year the focus is more about holistic change, not just weight loss. I was working with Glenn Mackintosh the show’s psychologist in the “mind health” segment together with the beautiful, kind and gentle horses at the New Secret Garden in Hawkesbury, NSW. I feel really proud to have been part of this show for two reasons:
- I believe that EAL is a powerful form of learning about self that can support the transformational goals of the contestants
- I wanted to showcase this modality to a wide audience, so more people become aware of and curious about how horses can help humans learn life skills.
So stepping out of my comfort zone, I entered into the unfamiliar, very nerve wracking and super exciting world of reality TV production!
I explained to the contestants in my introduction that horses would be their "teachers, healers and role models". Unsurprisingly they were somewhat sceptical. Lisa Fay, one of the contestants commented "I'm going to talk to a horse, and we're going to have Zen?! What the hell is going on?" However in the interview after the EAL activities she said "It's really amazing. The whole thing about this assisted learning is the fact that you can change things with your energy, you can change things with your mindset". You can see why she changed her mind and also the moving insight and experience of the other contestants by watching the video available on Catch Up on www.tenplay.com.au. The EAL segment starts about 12 mins in.
The show's psychologist Glenn Mackintosh writes that "horses really are magical creatures. They don't know about your personal struggles, the baggage in your head, or the limitations you place on your future. They just respond to you in the now - your body language, your tone of voice, your energy. And with the support of a skilled EAL facilitator like Jackie, they are a powerful learning tool. He goes on to add "there was an eerily spiritual energy around our time with the horses, and I knew right away that this was some of the most transformational work we'd done together." To read his full article click on this link You Make a Pretty Good Therapist for a Horse.
I am feeling very grateful to have been invited to be the EAL faciltiator on this show and to have had the opportunity to support the contestants with their internal transformations. Let me know what you think if you have seen it by posting a comment on my Facebook page.
NOTE: I am running a full day introduction workshop “Discover The Wisdom of The Horse’ in most states throughout May which is open to the public - teaching about presence, self awareness through the wisdom of the horse. For more information or to book a place see the Programs page.
Whilst this segment on TBLT is an example of EAL for personal development I can also custom design workshops for organisations for leadership development and social and emotional intelligence skills courses.