No one’s perfect (nope, not you either) so it’s just a matter of time before you make a mistake, mess up or miss an opportunity. There’ll come a time when you do everything right but it’ll still go wrong, or a time when you do your very best but it won’t be good enough. Regardless of the mistake, mess-up, or missed opportunity you’ll always be able to make up and move on as long as you’re mindful of the words you’re using to describe that experience . . . and this is where verbal erasers come in.
Verbal erasers are a series of unique words that contribute to your self-talk (what I like to call brain-babble because we’re all so good at babbling to ourselves!). There are two interesting things about these unique words. First, they have a weird way of erasing comments made just prior to them (like a pencil eraser erases words that have been written, verbal erasers erase words that have been spoken). The second interesting thing about them is that they can be either highly positive or unfortunately negative. In other words, verbal erases can be used for good or evil!
So what kind of words create this unusual category of verbal erasers? Since you’ve probably never heard of verbal erasers before it’s helpful to know what they are so you can always use them for good and never evil. The most common verbal eraser is the word but and it’s crazy how easily it can turn good into bad (or bad into good) simply by how you use it. Here are a few examples of good verbal erasers:
- I didn’t win today but I really enjoyed myself!
- I pulled the first rail but I finished strong and the last fence was the best!
It’s easy to see how the word but erased the loss and the first rail, and helped your brain focus on enjoyment and finishing strong. Here are a few examples of bad verbal erasers:
- I had fun today but I didn’t win!
- My last fence was good but the first one was horrible!
From these two examples, using the exact same experience, it’s easy to see how the word but erased the positive that preceded it. No longer are you thinking about enjoying yourself and finishing strong; those have been erased and you’re left thinking about losing and that last disappointing fence.
Another common verbal eraser is the word yet, and unlike but, it’s almost always used in the positive sense. For example,
- I can’t do flying changes yet.
- I haven’t qualified for training level yet.
The best thing about the word yet (in addition to erasing the can't and haven't that preceded it), it's also been proven to trick your brain into getting excited about what you’re going to do in the future, instead of feeling bad about what you can’t do in the present.
The words you say to yourself have a huge influence on your behaviors, outcomes, and reality so this month become mindful of the role that verbal erasers play in your life. For example, have you ever said anything like, “I’m sorry but you made me so mad”. If so, you didn’t really apologize did you? You’re still just blaming the other person. Always remember that brain-babble can be positive or negative, so always remember to use the word but and yet for good and never evil!
If you’d like me to teach a clinic to your barn, association, or pony club this summer or fall just shoot me an email at [email protected]! Forty-two of my 54 dates are sold out but I still have a few great dates available!
Chants of “War Eagle” were heard from end to end of the White Oak cross-country course as the overnight leaders and defending champions from Auburn University tore between the red and white flags Saturday to remain atop the leaderboard of the 2023 Intercollegiate Eventing Championship at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC).
The last three years have been a time of great change throughout the country for homes, businesses and industries. Rising costs of living, shrinking of assistance and changes in demographics have affected so much of our world, and that includes the equine industry. However, not all of the changes are easy to identify. This is why the American Horse Council (AHC), together with the U.S. Equestrian Federation, has kicked off what could be one of the biggest studies in more than 50 years with the 2023 National Economic Impact Study (EIS) for the equine industry.
Twenty-three teams from 13 colleges and universities have traveled far and wide for the seventh annual USEA Intercollegiate Eventing Championship held at the Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) in Mill Spring, North Carolina.
If you have been involved at a higher level with the USEA, you probably recognize the names of the two ladies that spearhead all of the efforts of the USEA’s Programs, Partnerships, and Marketing department: Kate Lokey, Director of Programs and Marketing, and Kaleigh Collett, Marketing Coordinator, but a new member of this team has also joined the USEA staff in Heather Johnson, Programs and Inventory Assistant. If you have considered advertising with the USEA or are involved in the USEA’s Young Event Horse, Emerging Athletes U21, New Event Horse, Adult Riders, Young Riders, Classic Series, or Grooms programs, you probably have or most likely will interact with one of these staff members.