When horses are a part of your life there’s sure to be no shortage of amazing memories made at the barn with with these wonderful four-legged partners…but sometimes negative emotions like show jitters, doubt, fears, and anxiety can make you forget all about your most meaningful memories! It’s as if all the bad stuff can blind you to all the good stuff! This is called the negativity-bias; and while it sounds a bit discouraging, we can actually use its awareness to motivate us to never let it happen, and that’s where this month’s tip comes in!
There are two easy and effective ways to make our positive memories the priority. The first is called memory-motivation, and it occurs when you recall empowering memories from your past to motivate you in the present, like the when you were a bit nervous before a show, and a friend reminded you how well you rode there last year; or when you were worried about an upcoming clinic but a family member reminded you how much fun you had at your last one. In these examples, the empowering memories from your past can help you to regain the motivation and confidence needed to overcome the overwhelming feelings in the present.
Memory-motivation works best when you know exactly what situations make you you struggle. Is it competing in front of a crowds, being criticized by a judge, or going last in a class? Is it D, all of the above? If so, come up with a few pre-defined positive memories from the past ,and then simply recall those memories the next time you begin to struggle.
The second way to make positive memories a priority is to listen to empowering music that makes you feel the same way that your motivating memories do. When athletes listen to upbeat music as a way of improving their outlook, their songs are called a mood-modifiers. Listen to empowering music, and don’t be surprised if you begin to feel empowered!
So while memory-motivation and music-motivation are both very good mood-modifiers, they’re not really the subject of this month’s tip. In fact, it’s the combination of both that creates this month’s tip; your personal movie trailer or PMT.
When you think of a movie trailer you probably think of large, vivid, powerful images paired with loud empowering music, and that’s exactly what we do when we build our own personal movie trailers. You combine your most vivid and powerful images (memories) with your most uplifting songs (music), and then allow the combination of the meaningful memories and the motivating music to empower you and remind you just how amazing your riding life really is.
So, this month why not begin creating your own PMT by finding your three most amazing memories and then match each one with a wonderfully powerful and motivating song. Once you’ve paired them, close your eyes and listen to each song while thinking of its memory, and don’t be surprised if your personal movie trailer begins to makes positive the priority while also getting you excited about all the wonderful new memories you're about to make!
I hope you enjoyed this month’s Pressure Proof tip and are looking forward to more in the future. If you’d like even more mental coaching tips feel free to sign-up for my new online sport psychology course launching Sept 30. It consists of almost 30 short videos, downloadable recaps and short quizzes to test you understanding. You can read more about it here.
As Tropical Storm Ophelia brought soaking rains to the region today, the Plantation Field International continued its four days of competition with CCI3*-S and CCI4*-S show jumping and cross-country for CCI1*-S, CCII2*-S, and CCI3*-S divisions.
The USEA Area IX Championships took place during two different horse trials this summer, with the Modified Championships as part of the The Event at Archer (Cheyenne, Wymoming) in August and the Preliminary, Training, Novice, and Beginner Novice Championships taking place during The Event at Skyline (Mount Pleasant, Utah) in September. In addition, Area IX offered additional championship tests at the Starter and Tadpole levels at Skyline.
The CCI4*-S division at the 2023 Plantation Field International Horse Trials kicked off today with 39 horses headed down centerline. Local rider Boyd Martin of Coatesville, Pennsylvania, topped the leaderboard riding Luke 140, owned by the Luke 140 Syndicate, and is also tied for third (28.8) with the Annie Goodwin Syndicate’s Fedarman B. Martin is also placed 23rd with Contessa, owned by the Turner family.
The United States Eventing Association, Inc. (USEA) is humbled to announce the return of long-time partner The Dutta Corporation as the “Title Sponsor of the 2023 USEA Young Event Horse (YEH) Championships,” which include the East Coast Championships at the Maryland 5 Star at Fair Hill in Elkton, Maryland, on Oct. 19-20 and the West Coast Championships at Twin Rivers Ranch in Paso Robles, California, on Oct. 27-28.