Well, Christmas break is almost over. I won't be going on about all the gifts, although they were all fantastic :) ;I will just mention that Ricky bought me one year subscription to Horse and Hound magazine!! :):):)
New year is just four days away and the end of December is the time when I usually try to put pen to paper (or fingers to the keyboard more likely nowadays) and write down plans, hopes and challenges for the coming 12 months.
Having read a NLP book (see my post here) I decided to give more attention to the words I use not only when teaching but when self-talking my plans. I would normally say 'I hope to take this and that exam this year' or 'I am going to try to fit more training for myself this year' etc. According to NLP theory (which, by the way, have some impressive sporting results when combined with sports psychology), the words and expressions you use on day to day basis have very specific actions on your unconscious mind. If I say to myself that I am hoping to take my Stage IV next year this is exactly what will happen - I will be hoping to take it throughout the year.
I guess, by saying that 'I hope', 'I try' etc I quietly allow various 'ifs' and 'buts' to enter the equation. In other words, I create a back door for myself so I can sneak out undetected without much trouble. Well, I hoped, I tried ...but it didn't happen...will try again next year...etc
I do think words have incredible power. You can observe it easily especially if you teach nervous riders - they will only respond to you and trust you if you use powerful, confidence giving language. This is, by the way, one of the many reasons why I find teaching in English frustrating as my words don't always come to me naturally and sometimes moments of hesitation cost you someones trust. The same frustration, however, pushes me to learn more, improve and develop my linguistic skills further and further.
The book I mentioned above says: "The meaning of your communication is the response you get...which may be different from the one you intended...what you say about yourself and to yourself are your beliefs, and your unconscious mind looks for reinforcement and justification of them..."
So, I am going to stop hoping and trying in 2008. Instead I will:
1) Pass further BHS exams:
2) Train and compete Elementary dressage
3) Attend The National Instructors’ Conventions 2008
4) Obtain UKCC (UK Coaching Certificate) qualification (Level 3)
5) Take more riders on and boost my earnings (which will in turn allow me to afford all the above!)
The above are my priorities for 2008 as far as teaching/coaching career is concerned. There will be plenty little goals and aims on the way but those will be my main focus.
Roll on 2008!