I was reading Confessions of an AA Event Rider and Convicted Over Thinker the other day, which is a blog I enjoy a lot because she is a very honest writer and she writes freely about her struggles. I’ll give you a (not so much) secret, this horse showing thing isn’t easy and I enjoy blogs that are honest about the trials and tribulations.
Anyway, Suzanne recently went to an Andrea Waldo clinic (read her entire post, it’s worth it) and a new concept was introduced to me – stories. In her words…
A story is something that hasn’t happened yet. It holds no truth because it is not in the moment.
This is when I realized that I am a really good storyteller, even if I’m just telling them to myself.
What am I talking about? Here are some examples.
- Simon has soundness issues, and he’s going to break down if he ever jumps higher than 2’0″.
- I’m overweight, and I’ll never do well in the hunters because of my size.
- Simon got a late start with his training, and he’s miles beyond all the other show horses his age.
- Because we don’t have clean changes yet, we’ll never win a ribbon at the shows we go to.
By themselves, none of those statements seem that bad. They’re all kinda true, but the problem is that I hold onto the story part of each statement instead of the truth. I repeat them to myself over and over to the point that all of a sudden the story is just as true as the fact to me. Let’s face it – you can’t be successful in anything if you don’t believe in yourself. Killing the negativity in these stories is a part of me actually believing.
Let’s look at the stories again, and leave only the truth.
- Simon has soundness issues.
- I’m overweight.
- Simon didn’t really start work until he was 5.
- We don’t have clean changes.
Without my own fiction put in, everything that I listed above seems pretty reasonable to me. So what he didn’t start non-race training until 5? Not every seven year old is marching around the 3′. I’m overweight, yeah okay – but I can get more fit. I can work on that. Really, doesn’t every horse have some kind of soundness issue at the end of the day?
This way of thinking is really good for me in a stop and smell the roses kind of way. There is so much to be thankful for. There is so much good here. Can’t let my brain get weighed down by negativity and stories that I love to tell myself.
What kind of “stories” do you tell in your horse life or non-horsey life?