BY DANIEL STEWART
Mindset is everything. It defines how you’ll act and react; what you believe; how you treat yourself and others, and whether you’ll succeed or fail. It literally defines who you are and who you’ll become. From what drives you to what scares you, and from how you approach challenges to how you recover from mistakes… mindset is everything. Your thoughts, beliefs, attitude, and aptitude are all determined by your mindset, so developing a healthy one is one of the most important mental skills you can build.
There are five basic qualities on which mindsets are measured… and simply being aware of them has been proven to help you create them. Take a look at the list below to see if you have what it takes to create a strong mindset:
1. Persistence: The quality of always moving forward, never quitting, and pushing on regardless of struggles or setbacks. It’s the ability to keep striving for your goals, to hold it together when it would be normal to fall apart, and to always finish what you start.
2. Positive Realism: Being positive is good, but being a realist is just as important. An overinflated mindset can sometimes get you into trouble because not all situations are going to be 100% positive. Making the best of a bad situation without losing your self-confidence is the key to positive realism.
3. Humility: Riders with humility have a desire to improve and are quietly confident in their abilities, but they also assess their strengths and weaknesses without under or overestimating them. They know that hard work can change any weakness into a strength, it just takes a little time and courage.
4. Vulnerability: Riders who allow themselves to be vulnerable don’t worry excessively about mistakes or failures because they know they learn as much from their struggles as they do from their successes. They’re not afraid to try new things, admit they have more to learn, or ask help from others.
5. No Regrets: Regret is one of the most powerful and destructive of all human emotions because it casts a shadow of doubt over your experiences and causes many riders to lose faith in themselves. Riders without regret feel periodic disappointment, but they never allow it to sidetrack their self-belief.
Hopefully you’ll recognize many of these qualities in yourself, but never hesitate to try and develop a few more. When it comes to building a positive mindset, always remember that if your mind can conceive it, and your heart can believe it… then you can achieve it!
Originally posted in Daniel Stewart’s Pressure Proof Academy monthly tips.
Daniel Stewart has been an equestrian for over thirty-five years and has coached riders all over the world for the past twenty-five. Combining his knowledge as an equestrian with a degree in physical education, he created an empowering and inspiring clinic series that helps riders develop equally strong minds and bodies. As the internationally acclaimed author of Pressure Proof Your Riding, Ride Right, and Fit and Focused in 52; he’s widely considered one of the worlds leading experts on equestrian sport psychology, athletics, and performance. He teaches clinics and seminars to thousands of riders each year including an annual summer clinic-tour that includes 50 clinics in more than 30 cities over a span of 60 days. He’s a sough-after keynote speaker, has published countless magazine articles, and is an equestrian sport psychology and rider fitness contributor for many other equestrian associations.