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Building your success

After my last ramble about having supportive people around you I thought I’d follow up with the importance of building a team for success.

Everyone needs different things to do their best in the competition arena, so it’s important you hire out for the right things in your support group.

I, for one, need a few specific things. I need someone that is focused on me, so I can look at them when things don’t feel right, or ask for a sip of water and generally not have to stress out because there is always someone keeping an eye for when I ask for something. This may seem a bit needy… I’ve spent quite a lot of time trying not to be needy and do things alone, but this has never equalled success for me.

I need space to feel. In the case of warming up for a class I need time enough that I can warm up properly, listen to my horse and feel what he needs. Some days he needs a lot of walking, or a lot of transitions or a gallop to get going. If I don’t have enough time to feel those things, things never gel. In that same breath I need space to think and feel and having someone on the ground yelling at me to come again or anything that doesn't give me time to think and feel about what just happened is overwhelming for me.

I also need someone I trust there for me. This may seem obvious but if I feel nervous I need someone that I know knows me well enough to say, “You can do this” or if I’m trying to save jumps in the warm up ring I need someone to tell me to jump one more because that’s what we actually need. I need someone that isn't' trustworthy but that I actually will listen to that I trust their gut instinct and they are there reading the situation not just doing the routine...this is not so easy to find.

The thing about needs, though, is that if you don’t tell the people around you what you need from them or won’t admit to yourself the things you need no matter how frivolous or needy feeling it seems, you won’t get what you need and you will be left not feeling ready.

I was told by a good friend this last week, “You are out there to do a job,” so be a boss. Don’t worry about how you come across; tell people what you need so you can do your job well. I was also reminded today that even though it feels like privilege to do what i'm doing, it’s still my job in the moment to do the very best of it, so when it’s my turn to ride do that and only that to the best of my ability.

'Preserve the performance' – make decisions based on what will best serve the performance.

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