Sunday, 30 March 2008

The worries, the flowers and the Blue Chip scholarship

Some time ago Mikael at Rising Rainbow (Arabian Horses) asked a few fellow bloggers (me including) about what really annoys us/what we can't stand etc and although I completely forgot to make a post about it I shall just tell you what it is that annoys me the most right now...
It's the peculiar structure of working life/adult life/business life/working life (whatever you want to call it) whereabouts if you follow your dreams/enjoyed profession you are more than likely to struggle financially. There seem to be a perfect positive correlation between the jobs that give people personal satisfaction and fulfillment and the lowest salary! Sure, there will be some feeling great making money spending their lives in office cubicles but do you see what I mean?
Jobs that make you laugh or are based on caring for something will most likely be at the bottom of any wage statistics.
So yes, it does annoy me a lot. But hey, in this world, if something doesn't make money it's not worth money - sad yet true.

Last week, being also the last week of the month is the time when I analyse my income/expenses (with great help from ManageMyHorse reports!) gave me a grim realisation...if i don't manage to find some funds to help me cover my competition/training costs I will have to put it on hold. The worst thing is, I know it would be a very depressing thing to do as competing and training is what drives and motivates me to get better. I want to ride better and gather more experiences to then be able to teach better. It's all a very close circuit of elements that suppose to jigsaw together. If I loose one I will never get the picture I want. And I don't want a half-made picture either...

As I am more and more aware of the legal situation of freelance instructors in the UK I decided to cut my private clients to absolute minimum until I register with the BHS Register of Instructors and have a full freelance insurance as a part of their package. However, this will not happen until July (as I still need to attend one more course organised in June) and I am therefore short of any potential income coming that way.
So I worry :(
The teaching I do at the moment gives me a lot of the satisfaction and enjoyment I look for in my job. I get up in the morning and I am happy to go to work. This is something I don't want to change. The problem is, I need to take more exams in order to be paid better. The exams and the training towards them are costly...Sometimes you are lucky and you have an employer (like I do now) who not only arrange for the training for you but actually pays you for those training hours. It doesn't change the fact that the pay is low and the costs of living are high.
So I worry :(
I worry because I care. I don't want to become just one of the many instructors grinding their teeth and baring their situation. I want to be the best I can be and challenge myself all the time; I want to be able to afford that challenge too!
It's frustrating and annoying and it upsets me. I even got flowers from Ricky the other day and he never buys flowers ;)

The truth is, and yes I know it, is that I just have to be patient and bare the situation until I have more exams & experience under my belt. In times like this I really wish my family was here to help me so I could buy or loan a couple of horses as then it will all be much more likely for the situation to take the shape I am after; with them living thousands miles away it makes things rather difficult. People who keep their horses all on their own have my greatest admiration as I wouldn't dare to venture into horse ownership without the support I used to have from my family.

Having spoken to people on various ways of acquiring a sponsorship it's pretty obvious that my chances are close to nil. However, I was advised to look for a low level support/funding which just might make a difference.
I am in the process of drafting a "portfolio" which I will then try to send out (as you guess it will also be costly! Ech!).
Someone also told me about this competition run by Horse & Rider magazine and Blue Chip Horse Feeds - 'A unique, One-year Blue Chip scholarship' - "the winner gets a lesson with top rider/trainer plus expert advice, a year's supply of Blue Chip feed, tailored to your horse and Blue Chip clothing for you and the horse". Sounds good, doesn't it? I will have a go although considering the caliber of competitors they sponsor I won't be holding my breath...
I have also decided to definitely enter the BHS Young Instructor of the Year 2008 competition as it has £500 training vouchers on offer.

OK, enough moaning, I am off for a lesson with Hamlet today so will post an update on his training blog in the evening.


Rising Rainbow said...

I think that anything worth having has it struggles that go with it. I know they sure are here at my end of this horse dream thing.

I see lots of folks who say you can't make money in the horse industry but that just isn't true because I see people who are who started off with little if anything. So don't get discouraged by those around you who are complaining about being stuck. They are stuck because of the choices they have made.

Sounds to me like you're doing your homework on what it'll take to get you where you want to go. Getting there might be a struggle but it will be worth it and it'll set you apart from those who were unable or unwilling to take the risks.

Unknown said...

Thank you Rising Rainbow, I am hoping this struggle will be worth it; in fact I know it will as long as I keep on going.
Sometimes I think I just need more patience...

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