I really loved how the girls ran for me this weekend. Yep, I'm back in the saddle, hanging out at the post, running the girls at sheepdog trials. Nell has become such a partner; we are finding the ability to get things back together when they go wrong which has been and will always be a goal of mine. Not that I don't strive for "perfect" mind you.....but when things go wrong, the getting it back together is progress from the stinking it up the whole way around we've seen.
Bella got around twice and I am so happy to have her out running and trying. We have work to do. Today we head back to the PT's office, as it might be physical work that needs done. Her runs were like driving a car with no breaks (our go-to under pressure maybe) and the ability to turn only one way well. It's not like Bella to not open up a come bye flank close at hand...say the pen......when I make my point. I'll go have her checked out and see what I can do to help her be more comfortable with the stride out on that left side. I cannot express how thankful I am she ran and ran sound! The detailed picking of that flank is the best of starting points for trialing....we will find our rhythm and get back into sync and I will do the physical work necessary to get her back to feeling 100%.
Stepping back into the trial world after a brief hiatus was a bit like being sugar free for 8 months and going to a grocery store........the bakery isle whispers to me: german chocolate slices of cake, maple bars, blueberry muffins, and even the darn bagels can look at me with bedroom eyes. I've learned to just not go there.....I don't even use the bakery section to get the the deli section....there are safer routes to travel. I can and do spend time in the produce section and allow myself to go hog-wild with honey crisp apples and kale. Such is life at sheepdog trials.....
I got an email from a sports psychologist I love reading just before I headed out the door to run dogs Saturday morning. She spoke of a disease I've actually contracted in the past and one I have to work to prevent relapse in myself......it's called the Disease of Me. "When you have the disease of me, your confidence is not real. It's not based on your skills, your results, or your resilience. It is based on your PERCEIVED superiority to everyone else." This disease seems to be more prevalent in the world of competition; its not isolated to any one sport and sheepdog trialing is not exempt. "All unhappiness is caused by comparison"
I also see a secondary, and almost more fatal disease beginning to rear its ugly head.....the Disease of You. That's where a person will have the Disease of Me and want to have company in their misery so the PERCEIVED superiority is shared with others that have not asked for any input. Not that handlers don't need mentoring....just not from those who do it from the point of making themselves look like Gods.
I was talking with a gal at the recent sheepdog trial, and she confessed to me that, this year, her goal is to really enjoy her dogs and their runs. This was not the excuse of somebody who can't get around well; instead they focus on the good in their run and don't address what needs attention.....this comment came from a top competitor who routinely puts down runs that make a person sit, watch, and make notes. This weekend, her runs were astounding! Was it the change in focus or did her dogs just mature over the winter? Did her dogs feel the release of pressure and find their best in the support coming from the post?? I do believe that this might be one of those magical moments where "right focus" creates winning.
It's that double edge sword though...you can't say, "fine I will have "right focus" so I can win". "Curing the Disease of Me can free you from envy, unhappiness, and under-performance. You see other athletes as an inspiration, not a threat. Of course the quickest and easiest way to cure the Disease of Me is to stop living in fear that someone else will surpass you. This means concentration on your game, not someones else's game." ~L Brown
That and stay out of the bakery section at the grocery store......
Seize the Day!!!
Little Ree Mini Tour! by Ree
14 hours ago