The last couple of weeks have been so exciting and inspiring, glued to our TV's watching the TEAM GB Equestrian events in Rio and like us you probably have had thoughts that go like this – “How amazing would it be if I got to perform at the Olympics” quickly followed by “It will never happen to me so I’ll leave it to the professionals”. Richard has often had such thoughts, but after watching a video link called ‘TED Talk’ by Carol Dweck he makes a subtle ‘yet’ positive change to his thoughts, he tells us more.
I was randomly watching TED Talks on YouTube when one came up by the psychologist Dr Carol Dweck titled “The power of believing that you can improve”. In this video she talks about the power of “yet”.
This is actually a powerful word when used correctly and applied to my dressage training. To explain this here is a list of things I can’t do:
- I can’t ride a halfpass
- I can’t ride a two time changes
- I can’t do pirouettes
- I can’t score over 65% in an Elementary dressage test
- I can’t qualify for the Olympics
This is a realistic list and I am sure for those who know me, they will all agree these are things I can’t do, and I am sure some of you will agree you can’t do them either. But the problem with this list is it is a block; it lists the things I can’t do with out applying the future possibilities that one day I might be able to. So now I rewrite the list with “yet”:
- I can’t ride a halfpass yet
- I can’t ride a two time changes yet
- I can’t do pirouettes yet
- I can’t score over 65% in an Elementary dressage test yet
- I can’t qualify for the Olympics yet
The list is still true but it now adds possibility. There is always a chance for many technical, political or physical (amongst other) reasons why I may not ever achieve one or all of those items on the list but it creates the never say never mentality that stops you giving up before you even try.
The first four on the list you all might be happy with, but the Olympics, are you for real? Well why not have this as an aspiration? The Japanese dressage rider Hiroshi Hoketsu was 71 when he took part in the London 2012 games. The odds of winning the jack pot on the National Lottery is 45,057,474 to 1 and I still play it in hope, but there are 1.3 million people who regularly ride horses in the UK, so looking at it this way, the odds of me getting one of the four places on the Olympic team are only 325,000 to 1 which are way better than the odds to win the lottery!
So for that reason, I am proud to say I am not good enough to be on the British Olympic team yet. But between now and 2020 I’ll be (in my mind anyway) training for Tokyo.
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