The Horse Physio - Delivering care with expertise since 1992

Clear and consistent communication eases uncertainty

Clear and consistent communication eases uncertainty

You can listen to the audio version of this blog here.

“The mistake is thinking that there can be an antidote to the uncertainty.” David Levithan 

I like to be in control of what’s going on in my life. Don’t we all? Uncertainty makes me anxious, and I fight harder to take back control.


It turns out that horses don’t respond well to uncertainty, either. As Intelligent Horsemanship Recommended Trainer Carley O’Callaghan (Considerate Horsemanship) said in a FB post, “When we are not consistent and clear, the horse doesn’t understand what’s expected. Quickly, you’ll find yourself in a situation that’s not enjoyable/dangerous with a horse that doesn’t understand. When we are being clear with horses, we will quickly find our need to correct the horse becomes less and less. If you feel you’re correcting the same thing over and over, it’s time to change the approach and question.” 

Something similar applies to relationships with people, whether friends, family, or work colleagues. Communication is key. When communication breaks down, uncertainty reigns. Whether you’re waiting to hear when your hospital visit will be, or a child is confused about what’s for dinner, or a friend hasn’t replied to a text message, we’ve all experienced the exhaustion of unclear and inconsistent communication. And I have no doubt that we have all been the source of the poor communication at some point. 

I don’t have any easy answers. I promise you that in any interactions I have with you, I will try to be clear and consistent in my communication. I also know that I will sometimes get it wrong, and I ask you to be patient with me as I continue to grow and develop my communication skills.

Your challenge today, should you choose to accept it, is to think about a difficult situation that you’re experiencing and look at it from the other person’s point of view as well as your own. Could better communication improve the situation? I hope so, and I’m sending love and encouragement to help you along the way.

You can listen to the audio version of this blog here.

Sue Palmer MCSP, aka The Horse Physio, is an award-winning Chartered Physiotherapist who promotes kind and fair treatment of horses through education with empathy. To hear more from Sue, sign up for her free newsletter.

Sue’s popular books include ‘Harmonious Horsemanship‘ (co-authored with Dr Sue Dyson), ‘Understanding Horse Performance: Brain, Pain or Training?’ and ‘Horse Massage for Horse Owners‘. These, and some excellent online courses, are available at

Sue is registered with the RAMP, the ACPAT, the IHA, the CSP and the HCPC.