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  • Writer's pictureMichelle Henderson

The Horsemanship Journey: Navigating Life's Obstacles with Shane Jacob

Horses running
The Horseman Journey


Our guest, Shane Jacob, founder of the Horsemanship Journey, shares insights from over 30 years in the horse industry, blending personal development with horsemanship. In this blog, we delve into Shane's journey, the lessons learned from horses, and the valuable insights he imparts through his podcast and coaching services.

Growing Up on a Ranch:

Shane Jacob, a seasoned professional in the horse industry, takes us back to his roots. Growing up in a ranching family in Utah, he shares that they were primarily involved in sheep ranching. While not directly in the horse business, Shane's childhood was surrounded by horses used for tending to the sheep on the range. This upbringing laid the foundation for his lifelong connection with horses.

The Horsemanship Journey:

Shane's journey led him to establish the Horsemanship Journey, a platform that intertwines personal development with horsemanship. As a certified life coach, professional horseman, entrepreneur, and author, Shane empowers individuals to tap into their inner horsepower, break through limitations, and embrace their true potential. His podcast, the Horsemanship Journey show, features interviews with top horse professionals, veterinarians, and experts in human behavior.

Learning from Horses:

Horses, according to Shane, are magnificent creatures that offer valuable lessons. Drawing parallels between horse-human relationships and human-human relationships, he emphasizes the importance of forgiveness and listening. Horses, as excellent listeners, mirror the unspoken communication prevalent in human interactions. Shane highlights the forgiving nature of horses, a trait that teaches us self-forgiveness and the ability to embrace each new day.

Empowering Others:

Shane's passion for empowering individuals extends to helping those interested in pursuing careers in the horse industry. The Horsemanship Journey provides a system to guide individuals towards living their passion with horses. Additionally, Shane addresses confidence issues related to horses, offering a systematic approach to rebuild and strengthen confidence.

Equine Coach Certification:

On the horizon is the Equine Coach Certification, an advanced program designed for life coaches interested in coaching individuals in the horse industry. Shane aims to equip coaches with the necessary skills to navigate the business aspects of coaching while addressing specific challenges faced by horse owners.

Inspiration and Self-Worth:

In a poignant moment, Shane shares a powerful message about self-worth and personal responsibility. He emphasizes the immeasurable value every individual holds and encourages a positive relationship with oneself. Shane believes that developing a positive self-view is not just beneficial but a solemn duty, enabling individuals to give and contribute positively to others.

Parting Thoughts:

As we conclude our conversation with Shane Jacob, it's clear that his journey encompasses not only a deep connection with horses but also a profound commitment to uplifting and empowering others. Through the Horsemanship Journey, Shane continues to inspire individuals to discover their inner strength, embrace self-worth, and live a life aligned with their passions.

To connect with Shane Jacob and explore the Horsemanship Journey, visit Join the movement of self-discovery, empowerment, and horsemanship excellence.

Transcript of this episode:

Michelle Henderson (00:11):

Hello everybody. Welcome to Michelle's inspiration Hour podcast, where every episode and Phil's incredible live stories of our inspirational guest. I'm your host Michelle, and I'm thrilled to have you join us today. Our goal is simple, to ignite that spark of inspiration within you. Today we have the privilege of introducing Shane Jacob, a man who's faced self-doubt, head on and emerge stronger. With over 30 years in the horse industry and insights from the top experts, he's learned to conquer the inner voices that holds us back. Shane is the founder of the Horsemanship Journey, blending personal development with horsemanship as a certified life coach, professional horseman, entrepreneur and author, he empowers you to tap into your inner horsepower, break through those limitations and embrace your true potential. Join us for an enlightened conversation with Jane, Shane. Jacob. Oh my gosh, let's bring him on. Hello. Hello. How are you doing today?

Shane Jacob (01:24):

I'm very well, thank you, Michelle. Thank you for having me with you. Appreciate your podcast and your good message and the inspiration you spread.

Michelle Henderson (01:31):

Oh, well thank you. And the same for you, and we'll get into your podcast as well, your show, because to me I was going, oh my gosh, there's so much good stuff on there and such great inspiration. Okay. But I really, this is something I'm always curious about. I think it's from being a teacher, I want to hear, I know that you were in the horse business for 30 years now. Did you grow up on a ranch? What did your childhood look like?

Shane Jacob (02:02):

Yeah, so I grew up in a ranching family in Utah. We were actually sheep ranching, so like range sheep, like thousands of range sheep. That's slowly becoming a thing of the past in the United States. So I wasn't necessarily in the horse business, but I grew up, my dad always had a number of horses that were used in tending to be sheep on the range.

Michelle Henderson (02:26):

And I was going to say, because I think you really need to know what you are doing if you're not taught how to do it, to take, because that's a lot of work is taking care of the animals. Now I've gone to the rodeos and I've gone to several things, but I am not a rancher, but I really admire people that really dedicate themselves to the animals and really taking care of everything. Now, how did you get this idea of being a life coach and really using what you have done for 30 years? What kind of led you to this point?

Shane Jacob (03:08):

Well, I'll tell you someday you're going along in life and sometimes it takes some of us longer than others, but we have these epiphanies and we have these transformations and changes, and they don't just really happen to us. I don't mean to say that these things just happen, but when we go through something, when we get to a better place, we want to share it with the world. And so I kind of was in a bad place for a lot of years or not so good of a place. And so it occurred to me that particularly in the horse business, I've been in the horse industry for over 30 years as an occupation. And like I mentioned before that I had experience with horses, but really as an occupation for a long time. And what I see with horses, the relationships that we have with horses are similar to what we have with people.

But what I see in the horse business is that a lot of times one of the first things I was looking at was how we relate to our horses in that we say, well, my horse does X, Y, z, or I can't get my horse to do this. And so I'm kind of working around what I can or can't get him to do, or I'm like, I'm blaming my horse for a lot of different things. And I just sat back and looked at, well, my horse doesn't like fly spray, so I never spray him. So it scares him. And so I look at how we relate those same things to ourselves, and it's a relationship just like it is with ourselves. And so the same things apply and when really the big message that we began with and we still have is the answers are here, they're here. They're not really out there. If you're a horseman, horse problems are people problems. They really are. And those all, not the problems, but the solutions, the problems and the solutions, they begin right here with us.

Michelle Henderson (05:08):

Now when you're talking about working and having relationships with horses, and you were with it for a very long time, so did the horses, you say that we have relationships, what did you learn from the horses?

Shane Jacob (05:25):

Yeah, okay. Good question. So I mean, there's so much to learn from horses, just like there's so much to learn in life. Horsemanship is just, it's a never ending process, just like life. I mean, life is just sometimes if I like to look at it as much as I can, it's just like this exciting thing. It's like how much can we get out of it? Because I don't know if we're ever really going to be able to even comprehend how much is available, the capacity of our brain, the capacity for joy, the capacity to feel certain feelings and just experience mean. And the horse business is the same way. There are people that spend decades and lifetimes just studying the intricacies. And all that's in horsemanship, which is a relationship with horses, is how we define horsemanship, which starts within. But one thing about horses, they're these magnificent creatures that God created and we just look at 'em and we admire their beauty.

And sometimes just being in their presence gives us the little peace inside of our soul and we can go to them and they can console us for the things that we're sad about and they can help us get through grieving and all different sorts of things. But one thing about horses that they're excellent listeners. Now, Michelle, people are listeners too. And a lot of times we kind of think people really don't, they might not really know what's really going on inside of us. And some people are more intuitive than others. And sometimes we like to think that we're not letting on all that's inside of us. We're kind of holding it back and we're wondering what other people are actually getting from us. And some people, they're getting very different things from us, unspoken communications, people, horses. I'm here to tell you, there's no secrets.

There's none. They know it all. I mean, you talk about a good listener, they are the epitome of good listeners. They know, and we don't even have to, even when we do talk to 'em, I mean it's debatable on really what they understand standard of this language. But horses know what's inside of our heart and inside of our mind. And that right there, the fact that they're open and that they accept us for what they are. And they're just another thing about horses, they're super forgiving. They are just so resilient and forgiving because we as people interacting with a different species, we're going to make mistakes. We're going to have miscommunications, and we're even going to do things that were just flat wrong that we regret, that we wish we didn't do. And horses, they forgive ourselves. So what's a lesson? Okay, a lesson is this horse is forgiving me.

Maybe I can forgive me. I mean, he is forgiving me. I've made so many mistakes before I didn't know when I started in the horse business, I like to tell people I've made practically every mistake known to man with a horse. I'm not proud of that. I didn't know, I didn't know. So I've made so many mistakes. But the horses overall in general, they're not spiteful. They don't hold it against me. And they come back generally speaking as much as they can. And they forgive and they forgive and let go, and they let tomorrow be a new day. I mean, they remember, I don't take me wrong. I'm not saying that they don't remember, but they're pretty darn forgiving and they're pretty darn listeners. So one of the lessons out of a lot is that I can forgive myself, number one, and really is just to listen, to have it be okay, what's inside me, number one. And to really try to be the same kind of listener that they are to me for somebody else.

Michelle Henderson (09:10):

And I'm going to tell you the one thing, and I really love that you talk about that the horses are really forgiving because they're not resentful, like you said, they forgive. The one thing that I've really worked with, because I worked with children with autism, and they would go to that hypo therapy and would get on a horse, and I think it would teach everybody what a horse just senses and knows that the child is on their back and just is very nurturing. And then the child starts speaking, a non-speaking child will actually start saying, giddy up. Giddy up. And it's like, then you get to see what the child can actually do. And the horse is what brings it out. And like you said, the horses teach us something.

Shane Jacob (10:05):

That's a great example. You talked about hippotherapy, and that's any type of therapy that horses are used with all different types of conditions for therapy. And what you just described there is a connection. What you described in that example is a connection. And horses are so good at connectivity with us, and Brene Brown says that we as human beings, we are hardwired for connection. And when we feel this, I mean there is something there. I'm telling you, if you've even just being close to a horse, you can feel some amount of this connection. And when we feel that connection, it changes us a little bit to the degree that we can. And we can over periods of time, just like we can change and improve the level and the strength of our connection with other people, we can do the same with forces. And that's a big deal right there, this connectivity, it's a big thing in our lives.

Michelle Henderson (11:07):

And I agree with you too. I think a lot of people will tend to connect more with animals at first because that's where the trusting is. And so I think that's why we have the dog therapy, the therapy dogs that people take everywhere because that soothes them and everything. So I totally agree that we can learn from any animal because they are so patient and they're energy and good listeners, you can tell 'em anything and they don't judge and they don't talk back, that kind of thing. That kind of thing. Alright, so let's go ahead and talk, and let me see if I can pull this up. Let's go ahead and talk about your show. And I know that you interview a lot of guests that talk about things that they have gone through and their behaviors and what they have learned. Can you tell me what your inspiration behind the show was and what you've learned from it

Shane Jacob (12:05):

As far as the Horsemanship journey show? Yeah, appreciate that. Yeah. I have the last couple of years and taken personally, interviewed over 75 of the top horse professionals in the world, along with all types of horse professionals, including veterinarians and expert and also experts in human behavior. So basically in horsemanship, there's three main areas in order to achieve excellence in horsemanship. Okay. Number one is your experience is the actual doing okay, you have to do it if you're going to be good. So that's a given, right? You have to have the experience, you also have to have the technique and the skill. So you have to have the knowledge of what to do when you're doing it. Then the third element is we have to have the mindset that guides the other two. And matter of fact, a lot of times we do it backwards.

We just start doing, and then we try to figure out is kind of what I did in my life when I was a kid, just tried to figure out, just went and did, right? And sometimes we experience life like that. We just go at it with no manual or no guidance or no mentor, and we just take on the world and hope it works out. And then we start to get knowledge and we start to train. And then what we come to realize is that how when we approach it with the mindset and the mental preparation and our thought processes correctly than that, when you combine, when the mindset guides the other two, then we can achieve excellence in horses. So our show has three pieces in each episode, and it was indeed an honor. And the biggest beneficiary of the show, of course, is me because I got to sit in front of some of the most outstanding horsemen and women and experts and motivational people that really, experts in human behavior in the world, and it's ended up being a good asset that people can draw a lot of.

Michelle Henderson (14:13): (Please share)

Hi, if you are being inspired by this episode, please share with somebody that will also be inspired. We are here to change the world. Alright, let's get back to the conversation.

Michelle Henderson

Also, I want to talk about what you offer on your website, because I saw this on Advanced Queen, if I can pronounce that right, coach certification. Alright, so what is all this about?

Shane Jacob (14:44):

Yeah, I'll tell you. So right now the focus of the horsemanship journey is three parts. Number one is that we help people who are interested in careers in the horse industry in all different areas of horse industry. A lot of people have, there's a lot of people that love horses and they think, oh, this would be my dream life. I'd love to do something I love, but I'm over here doing this dreary, this and that and the other, just trying to get by and I can't break out of it and go live my passion of what I want to. So we have a system, a system to actually get you from A to B to where you're living, what lights you up when you wake up every morning. So that's one thing that we do as a horsemanship journey. The second thing is that we really address confidence with horses.

So if you've had an event, sometimes you've had a wreck with horses or not, or maybe you just want to rebuild or restrengthen or even just simply to strengthen your confidence with horses. Confidence with horses is something that every horseman or horse rider or somebody that experiences horses has a thing with confidence. We all experience a lack of confidence to some degree at some point. Some of them can be pretty debilitating if we've had an injury or if they're just so big and scary, but we really want to do it. So we help people. We also have a system that we systematically take people through to help rebuild or strengthen their confidence with horses. And the third thing, what you pulled up is this fall, I think we're slated to be releasing or launching our equine, which is the horse species equine coach certification. So what we do is we have an advanced certification for life coaches that are interested in coaching people in the horse industry with their specific, we help 'em with the business aspect of coaching, and then we help 'em with specific problems that horse people, horse owners have, if that's their area of interest, and give 'em an advanced certification and help them with their business.So right now, that's what we do at the horsemanship journey mostly.

Michelle Henderson (17:11):

I love it and I'll explain why.

Shane Jacob (17:14):


Michelle Henderson (17:15):

I think it's great because I think a lot of people have fears and it does teach you to conquer your fears as well. So when I was younger, I went to a ranch and I rode a horse with my friend. It was her grandfather's ranch, and I was tying the horse up and all of a sudden, and he's an older horse, and all of a sudden his ears go down and she saw it happen, and of course my back has turned to the horse, and so the horse bit me right on the shoulder, and I'm sure he's telling me something. That's the way he was communicating with me, and I didn't know what was going on, but I mean being fair skinned and I had all this big bruise. So anyway, so I said, that horse is telling me something. Then years later, I took my kids horseback riding, and of course they put me on an old horse again, I don't know what it is with me on old horses, and this old horse did not like me, or I don't know, but anyway, and sat down and tried to roll me off of him.

So I'm sure he felt the fear because of the experience that I had with my first horse. And I have so many friends that have horses and they absolutely love them. And so somebody like me probably needs to call you. So are those kind of cases that you deal with?

Shane Jacob (18:49):

Yeah, we deal with that and the owners of those horses, because what you're describing sounds like the horse needs some leadership. Horses can also, horses can be behaved like children or in a situation there needs to be a leader. And if we don't step up and be the leader as the owner, horses are never good on the other end of this. When they're the leader, then people end up getting hurt just because of they're not made to lead. We're meant to be the leader, but sometimes really don't understand how that relationship needs to be beneficial to both. It actually benefits the horse for us to be the leader as more so than him, and plus it keeps us from getting hurt. Right, absolutely. Any types of situations like that, we deal with all kinds of things as far

Michelle Henderson (19:42):

As Yeah, I bet you do. I bet you do. And I'm sure it really helps people that, like you said, want to deal with horses and have not grown up with horses or with animals like you have, and that you're able to teach 'em. Now, I know that you also have tricks of the trade of being an auctioneer as well. Oh yeah,

Shane Jacob (20:04):

That is true.

Michelle Henderson (20:06):

So did you work at whenever they're selling cows and the animals, were you one of the auctioneers at that event as well?

Shane Jacob (20:16):

Well, at one time, a long time ago, in the mid nineties, I had a monthly horse sale in Las Vegas where we had a monthly horse sale and then pre covid, my auctioneer services company would mostly do farm equipment and stuff like that. But auctioneers are fun, auctions are fun, they're exciting, and we create a lot of energy and it's kind of part of our culture. But no, I haven't specifically worked in a cattle auction, but we sold a lot of horses with the option method of selling, which is a fun way to do it.

Michelle Henderson (20:51):

You're just a talented person. Let me just tell you, you're just got lots of talents that are kind of secretly hiding. Now, I'm going to kind of change a little bit. If somebody came to you and said, you know what, Shane, and you do this already on your show, but I need some type of inspiration, what can you tell me to get through whatever I'm going through just a general inspiration statement. What could you tell somebody?

Shane Jacob (21:23):

Yep. That's a great question. Henry Irene's a church leader, and he made a statement recently within the last year or so, and he said that as we go throughout our days and we interact with the people in our circles, unbeknownst to us, 80% of those people are suffering what they would consider a major life crisis. And I believe that that's true to them. Most people are going through something that they feel is a major light of crisis. And Michelle, when I look at what's causing all this turmoil and what's going on inside of us a lot of the time, and I hear people like Brooke Castillo, who runs the Life Coach School, say that in her 15 years of coaching, she says that everything boils down to a question of personal worthiness. Are we worthy? Are we good enough? I heard a lady we had on our show called Cheryl Green who's an author, and she made a statement that says that she believes that every negative behavior is tied to a lack of confidence.

Lemme say that again. Every negative behavior at the root is tied to a lack of a way that we feel about ourselves. You know what? I agree with that. And so I don't think that a good, solid, positive relationship with ourselves is a good idea. I don't think it's something that we should do so that we're happier and have more joy and we feel better. Although that is true and it results in that. But I go a step further because you know what, Michelle? I believe it's our solemn duty. I believe it's our duty, and here's why. When we develop a positive relationship with ourselves, not only do we get those things that I just mentioned, we feel better, we get more joy, we give ourselves more grace, and so we have more peace in our hearts, but we're able to give it. We do not have the capacity or the ability or it's just not there to be able to give to other human beings if we don't have it inside of ourselves.

So I would say to you that you are, if you're having a hard day, I'm telling you, you're worth it. We're all of the same value. Your value is immense. It's immeasurable. That's what I would say to that. Know it. Talk to yourself nicely. The way that we develop a relationship with ourself is the way that we pay attention to your words and your thoughts, your words, and your thoughts that you say to please pay attention to. Because when you tell yourself that you're an idiot, all these deprecating humor or negative things about yourself, you're believing it, whether it's unconscious, not so please begin with being kind to yourself. Give yourself grace because your value is immeasurable. That's number one. If you know that inside of your heart and inside of your soul, that would be the number one thing that I would ask people to do, is just to believe that and know that it's true.

Michelle Henderson (24:50):

I love it. Well said. There's nothing I can say after that because it was tremendous the way that you stated that. Such an inspiring statement. Thank you so much for sharing that. Alright, is there anything else that you want to talk about that we have not covered yet?

Shane Jacob (25:09):

Well, no. I'm going to add one more quick statement. Oh, sure. In my world and my book, the One Horse Race that's under construction and hopefully done soon.

Michelle Henderson (25:21):

Oh good.

Shane Jacob (25:22):

I believe that that right there, what we just talked about is our view of our own self influences more of anything else in this life. And I think it's so important. But that's one thing, and there's a couple of quick tips of how to do it, is pay attention to your thoughts, what you're thinking about yourself and your words that you're saying to yourself. The second thing is a thing, a huge concept called personal responsibility, which means not that you accept blame for everything that goes on, but whatever circumstance that comes to you that you look at, and you simply say, what can I do about this? Because when you look outside of it and don't take ownership, then you've removed your power to be able to progress and do anything with it. Those two concepts now, these are massive, huge concepts that we could just barely scratch the surface on, and they're in order.

Number one is to know that you're okay and you're not just, okay, you're an amazing human being. We're all exactly the same value. You're not lesser than no matter what you've done, no matter what. All the stupid, awful, terrible things that you feel bad about that you have shame about that makes you want to hide. You still regardless of that or this amazing equal to me and to every other human being, that's who you are. That's number one. And number two, if you just begin to scratch the surface of this idea of personal responsibility, you'll be able to make it through and really progress in life. I see it and I work on it myself every day. And the takeaway for this is to begin is with whatever situation comes when our tendency is to say, Hey, that was this, or this happened to me. And to be really looking elsewhere about kind of blaming and making excuses or just talking about something over here, why it happened and everything else, it doesn't matter. What matters in the moment is just to ask ourselves, what can I do about this right now? And those are my two big takeaways, and I appreciate you asking.

Michelle Henderson (27:33):

Oh, absolutely. And you know what? I feel empowered. You know what I'm saying? Because the way that you say things, you can tell that you're passionate about it, and it just makes me go, okay, I believe it. I believe it. Just the way that you stated it. That is fantastic. Well, are you ready for the last question on the will?

Shane Jacob (27:54):

Ready or not? Here we go.

Michelle Henderson (27:55):

Alright, let's do it. If you don't know a question, say spin again. Okay. So we'll see how it goes, and you'll be able to see it bigger once it stops.

Shane Jacob (28:08):


Michelle Henderson (28:09):

All right. Let's see. Oh, all right. So Shane, and this doesn't mean teacher, favorite teacher may be in school. It could be any person that has taught you. Okay. So who do you think is your favorite teacher that actually taught you something so important?

Shane Jacob (28:37):

Michelle? I've had tons of teachers, and I believe in mentors. And I believe I go to all the clinics and lessons, and I mean, I've ridden with literally hundreds of different people I've ridden horses with and taken instruction from. And I believe about, I'm all about education and moving on, but you know what, I'm going to narrow it down. When I was in high school, my wrestling coach, coach Daryl Henry in Pleasant Grove, Utah, was the man that, now I've always looked up to my dad, and I don't want to put my dad's number one, but this coach Henry, was a close number two, and the thing, he died last year in our little town of Pleasant Grove, and it was like a celebrity funeral in that little town. You would've thought that the biggest movie star died of the people that attended this man's to pay respects to this man.

And the thing that I gained from Coach Henry, one of the big concept was is to have what he called a fighting heart. And what he meant by that, Michelle was, is that it was persistence. It was like, never give up. You're not done until you quit. And this idea of this fighting heart that would, because in wrestling, and he was our wrestling coach, once your mind says, this guy's beat me, it's over. And so, but that lesson I've tried to think about and apply over all the time since, and that's a tremendous lesson that man left with me and lots of other people, and I'm very grateful for that.

Michelle Henderson (30:10):

Oh, that is awesome. Where can they reach you, Shane, if they're going, you know what? I love him. I want to reach him.

Shane Jacob (30:18):

We're all over every media that there is. I don't think that there's one that they're missing. And we're at the horsemanship

Michelle Henderson (30:24):

Okay. Awesome. Awesome. Okay. Before we say goodbye, let me, I found this on, I think it was on the Instagram or Facebook. I'm not really for sure. This was a quote that I really liked. And it says, the goal is not to be successful. The goal is to be valuable. Once you're valuable, instead of chasing success, it will attract itself to you. So I feel like that just kind of wraps it all up with everything that we have talked about. So Shane, I appreciate you coming on and for everybody else, I will see you next week to give you some more inspiration. Alright, I will see you then.


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