I often hear riders who are struggling saying they are 'back at square one' and will never regain their confidence, usually after they have suffered set back. But unless you completely and utterly believe this (and repeat it to yourself over and over), this is not the case!
When I work with riders, be it at camp, workshops or privately, we look for evidence that this is certainly not the case. In fact, some setbacks will make you stronger.
For example, it's certainly true that if you ride those difficult strides when you jump, even if it's so uncomfortable at the time, you become more balanced and can cope better when they arrive whilst competing. Many riders wish for the 'perfect stride' and tell themselves they are getting it wrong if they don't see it. What you are actually doing is learning to ride anything that comes along. (Gosh, we all wish for the 'perfect stride' everytime, it just doesn't happen!).
The more often you repeat any message to yourself, (and to others) the stronger you develop that belief in your capabilities. You do have choices of how to change what you believe in.
If it's a positive believe that you can and will become more confident, then this will happen, despite the setbacks. If you believe that's never going to happen, you will always remain scared, you would be right too.
Everyone will have setbacks, however, it gives you more experience and with that,the opportunity to change your planning to move forward. We have to learn to look past these challenges, seek support from people who want to see us succeed and be kind to ourselves when we are feeling low.
Sometimes yes, we have to consider if this is really the right horse for us, which is a difficult topic, but something that to needs to be looked at if we find the horse is well beyond our capabilities or is too green for us.
Horses do test us, however, that is all part of the thrill and privilege of sharing time with them, if it was easy (as we often hear), everyone would do it! xxx
Author: Amanda Kirtland-Page Acc MNCH, BACP, CNHC Acc
Adv Dip Integrative Counselling, Acc Hyp & Psychotherapy,
NLP Coach, Mindfulness & Wellbeing Trainer, Instructor