Setting goals is something we do subconsciously throughout life everyday. Whether it be brushing your teeth to doing the laundry or even going outside to ride your horse. These are little goals you set in your mind to assure that you have a beneficial day and get what you need to get done.
New year resolutions are the exact same, except long term. They are important to help you become the person you want to be. They provide stability and they drive you to organise your time and resources so that you can make the most of the upcoming year.
Before we get too much further into the year, Here are some tips to help you make some New year resolutions of your own:
#1 – Setting goals with Intentions
Being honest with yourself about your current limitations is extremely important. For example, if I were to set a goal for myself and said “In 2022 I am never going to knock a rail again.” Don’t get me wrong, that is a lovely thought but is it realistic? No it’s not, everybody makes mistakes! And unfortunately, later on down the track, setting goals “too big” can often lead to disappointment, self-doubt and loss of confidence.
One of the biggest reasons people fail to keep their New year resolutions is because they're not realistic or specific enough.
So start small. If one of your goals is to jump a 1 metre oxer. Train, train, train, because you can make that happen. If another goal is to purchase a new Kentaur Saddle. Work, work, work, because you can make that happen. Being intentional about how you wish to grow and develop, will help you achieve results. Dreams don’t work unless you do.
#2 – Responsibility and Discipline
There is a fine line between giving yourself a mental / physical break and becoming slack. As difficult as it is sometimes, don’t let the temptation take over and allow you to skip something just because you don’t feel like it. You MADE this a goal for a reason, you KNEW this wasn’t going to be easy. Life is full of things you may not like but the sooner you confront them, the sooner you will get it over with and the sooner you can go back to normal.
If you need a little extra help to keep you on track you can try calling a friend for help, practicing some positive self talk, or simply reminding yourself how your “poor behaviour” will affect your goal. The more you say “Hmm nah I think I’ll do it tomorrow” the further away your goal will become.
Turning this new activity into a good habit won’t happen overnight. Experts say it takes about 21 days for a new activity to become a habit and six months for it to become part of your personality. So have discipline with yourself and be patient, it will get easier!
#3 – Inspiration
As the year goes on, it’s common to feel a little unmotivated to complete these goals. In this case you might require some Inspiration to reignite the spark in which you started with when setting these goals.
When I lack motivation or inspiration here are some activities which help me reset my mindset and get back on track:
- Sit down for an hour and look through old pictures and videos to remind yourself how far you’ve come. I find this beneficial to resetting your mindset as you haven’t come this far to only come this far.
- Log onto YouTube and watch a few of your favourite riders compete in their discipline. For me personally, I find inspiration in re-watching the Olympics and watching my Idols tackle the huge courses at Tokyo.
- Go see your horse. You don’t have to ride, tack up or even brush them. Some quality time spent by their side can be very therapeutic.
#4 – My New Year Resolutions
Now with all this in mind and to give you a general picture of some goals you can set yourself, here are 5 goals I’ve set myself for 2022:
- Confidently make the move up to 2*
- Receive over 72% in a Dressage Test
- Finish on my dressage score at least 3 times
- Win a 2022 rug
- Place top 6 in the Master Series Leaderboard
Setting goals shouldn’t be stressful. If it is, try taking a step back and figure out a way to make them a bit smaller and more achievable for yourself.
I challenge you to set 5 goals for yourself over the year today. It is not a race to achieve these goals and it certainly is not the end of the world if you don’t complete them all. This is YOUR journey, make today the day you took the opportunity to better yourself.
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