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One day when putting on a Life Planning / Business Development workshop with horses I had an ephiphany. That is…my life is like a garden hose…

One season, when I was learning to be an Equine Guided Coach, I volunteered to water and feed horses on weekends to get over my fear of horses. I would have to take the garden hose to the stall and fill up the water bucket inside the stall. There were two places to turn on the water. One at the hydrant where the hose was attached. The second was at the end of the hose that you put into the bucket hanging in the horse stall. As I was putting on a life planning workshop I realized that my life was a lot like bringing water to horses. Water is a life force we can’t live without.

Think of it….first there is the source of the water...kind of like the life force in our life. We don’t make the water…we just tap into it. We have the opportunity to turn it on at the hydrant or with a faucet at the end of the hose. We can turn the spigot open full force…or let the force of the water just gently dribble through the hose. We’re at choice. That’s kind of like the choices we make in our life. We can live our life full of energy, being fully engaged, or we can consciously constrain the force..and live our life at partial energy.

This comparison gets even more interesting when you compare the size of the hose. It can be a garden hose, or a fire hose. So can we choose which way we want to live our lives. As a garden hose with a dribble or full force, or a fire hose with just a dribble, or full force. We’re at choice.

And, then there is the end of the hose with the sprayer, or nozzle. This is also a place where we can control the water flow (our life force flow). The water pressure is within the hose. All we have to do is release it. Turn the nozzle on. A little for a dribble. Or open it up full blast.

But the comparison doesn’t stop there. Remember as a kid how you used to crimp the hose so the water wouldn’t come through…so you could take a drink. Well..that’s like your life. Sometimes with limiting belief systems we can “crimp” our life force. We can shrink our energy down completely or just to a dribble…depending how we think of things..where we are stuck or blocked. Open up the crimp and the full force of water (or life) can come through. Same with your life. Open up the stuck areas and your energy can come back, full force.

And the analogy doesn’t stop there. Several times, when watering horses in Minnesota during the winter time it got so cold the water in the hose froze up and the hose had a big ice plug in it. The only way to get the water to the horses was to thaw out the garden hose so the water would flow through it again. So it is with our life. Sometimes our resentments and resignations freeze up our life energy force and it doesn’t flow. We have to thaw it out with forgiveness, acceptance, love and “letting go” to get the energy force flowing again.

Sometimes hoses get cut and the water (life force) flows out of the garden hose at the wrong spot. To stop the flow of the water through the cut area, or leak, we turn the spigot off for a while. We can repair the hose so the life force can come through it again. Kind of like life when we’re slapped down with illness, the loss of a loved one, a job loss, or a business shutting down or being merged. When we’re slapped down, we can turn off the spigot for a while until we repair the hose (our life)…and then open it up again. If we haven’t repaired the hose well it can spring another leak. But if we’ve repaired the hose well it can be as good as new.

Comparing my life with a garden hose has been a very useful metaphor for me. How much have I opened up my life force? How much energy am I allowing to flow? Am I living my life as a garden hose…or a fire hose? Have I got a crimp, or two, that need to be released to open up the flow or am I frozen with resentment and anger and need to be thawed out to let the energy flow. How does this metaphor work for you? Can you see the possibilities in opening up the spigot or faucet to let your life force flow through?

Questions to Ask Yourself

  • How are you choosing to let the energy flow in your life? Are you a garden hose or a fire hose?
  • What would you have to do to let all of your energy flow through?
  • What kinks in your hose do you need to release to let your energy flow?


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Larry Freeborg
Larry Freeborg is a life transition coach and inspirational speaker focused on working with people in the “Bonus Years” of their lives. His unique experiences working with businesses in strategic planning, business development (marketing & sales), leadership and personal development are blended with his training in life coaching, equine guided coaching, and his personal experiences with loss to form the foundation of his coaching practice, Living The Good Life on Purpose. Larry is available for speaking engagements with his popular “Refire, Don’t Retire!” and “Life Purpose Primer” programs. Contact Larry at