Report on F&I study evening with Becky Thompson, Life Coach “MINDHOP”

25th April 2024.  

Organised by Liz Eaton FBHS, report by Sarah Thorne BHSI.

Becky Thompson presented a fantastically educational presentation and discussion on Mastering Energy Shifts in ourselves and in our clients by being aware of what energy they may bring to a session.

She started with the explanation that we are all energy, with the potential for action, either being positive or destructive, coming from anabolic or catabolic energy, and how these play out in positive or negative energy that we ‘bring to the party’.

Becky explained that she spends a lot of time working with riders who are struggling with anxiety, are overwhelmed, or have just lost their spark.  She described herself as an Equestrian Life Coach – and explained that the anxiety that people show is usually just the tip of the iceberg.  She uses this simple model in order to help her clients navigate where they are, mentally, emotionally, and physically, and deal with things more positively, especially when life isn’t going to plan.

She also explained that one’s perception of a situation – ‘the story we tell ourselves’ – gives us our reality of that situation as we each see it.  Uncover that story, reveal the background conversation they’re stuck inside of, and encourage them to change the story.  Remove the filters we look through, dislodge our pre-determined interpretations, and the world will seem different.

Glass half-empty is transformed into glass half-full.

In this model, there are 1-7 levels, with levels 1-2 being the lowest and most negative energy, based on ‘woe is me’ and being a slave to circumstances, and 6-7 being the highest and most positive energy, with ease, flow and success.  And at any given moment we can choose our energy level.

Becky also explained that there is no right or wrong level – all have advantages and disadvantages, which we explored in discussions.  We just all move through the levels depending on our views of our worlds at any given moment

•Level 1, this denotes The Victim. The person who has low self-esteem, feels unappreciated, and displays fear and will probably lack of engagement with other people, or indeed their horse.
People stuck in this level need somebody to listen to and take care of them. Quite often they will find a reason that they can’t do anything, rather than the reason for doing something. It can be a cry for sympathy, or help.
When we find this in our rider, we have to be able to move them through to the next levels, by being able to navigate as to why they are where they are emotionally and what their thought process is for them to be there.

•Level 2 is the Fighter.
An energy and situation of anger, resistance, fear and stress with being overwhelmed and frightened, with a win / lose attitude.
There are benefits to this – the fact is that it can get things done, albeit not necessarily achieved well, or repeatable.  However it can be alienating to others, and (as the body usually finds an outlet for the anger) even destructive – not a good place for riders in particular.

The disadvantages are that it is not very motivating to stay in this level, so most people will tend to slip back emotionally to level 1 or pull themselves upwards to level 3 with our guidance.

Becky made it clear that it was OK to be in the lower levels if we want to – indeed we could choose to hide out there deliberately for a while, possibly accompanied by chocolate or a glass of wine(!) – but that it should be a conscious choice to let oneself go there, and one needs to have the self-awareness and the tools available to come out of it.

•Levels 3 and 4 are quite close, but the reasoning behind them is slightly different.

•Level 3 is The Rationaliser, someone who gives a lot and will take on responsibilities, is upbeat, will cope and tolerate, be cooperative in giving and forgiving – just so long as they also win.
And they do this from their head, not their heart.  It can be more about seeking reward for what they are doing.

•Level 4 is The Helper, the person who wants you or their client to win, not necessarily themselves, and is just happy to be part of others’ successful journey.
This is often us as coaches. We can display compassion, concern, loyalty with service to a membership body and teamwork.  Risks include poor boundary management, being a people-pleaser, and/or getting caught up in other people’s dramas – and we can get frustrated if not being listened to, in which case we slip back to Levels 3, 2 or 1…

•Level 5 is The Collaborator. There is a reconciliation of good and bad, finding the positive choices and the purpose to enlighten everything.  A sense of peace, control, awareness of opportunities, and choices in how we respond in any given situation.
A very optimistic outlook, finding meaning, learning and purpose, and taking very little personally, which gives a win-win blueprint with peace and acceptance of their thinking.

•Level 6, The Connector.
As the title suggests, they create a flow, embracing, connecting without judgement and with joy, with a desire for everybody to win. These people tend to be higher risk takers – because they have a higher energy level, with that comes confidence, and also because they are without judgement and have brilliant intuition, which reflects in their performance and result. Can be seen as aloof or even unrealistic, but we experience a high level of satisfaction when in this level.

•Level 7, The Creator.
The creator is a manifestation of the absolute passion in someone. They have absolutely clarity of thought, non-judgemental, fearless, but also can be careless – there is no winning and no losing, they just are. There is a spontaneousness to these people, but with immense gratitude in their being and beliefs. It truly is “all in the mind”.

Whether as coaches or as individuals ourselves, once we can recognise these seven energy levels, we may find that different riders create the different levels in us – and we can then develop our skills for how we handle those levels ourselves and transfer between them. We can then in turn help our clients.

It is fairly easy to move between any 1 or 2 levels at a time. Discovering what is the cause behind each energy level is necessary, to either uproot and rewire or praise and accelerate upwards.  We can use acknowledging, validating the person’s reasoning for their current state, asking questions, and increasing their sense of self-worth, developing how they put that into their own language, to help them up the levels.


Becky explained that if you can alter the thought, the feeling will then change, therefore the action will be more positive and the result will be more achievable, and hopefully achieved, which brings more positive thought to the model ongoingly.

So what is the thought that’s generating the feeling?

The thought has to be believed, positively or negatively, so question what evidence they have to support that.  Becky explained that we should use appropriate questions at all stages to shift their thought processes and re-frame ideas.

An insightful evening, that has made me realise that on a day to day basis I travel between Levels 2-6 faster than a ‘bullet train’, but do find rare moments of complete fluidity, transparency and gratitude. I must try to step off that train at this point!

Thank you Liz for organising this fascinating evening.