Blog By: Vincent Flores
This is a fact, the horse world is full of drama. I’ve witnessed barn drama in any country I’ve lived in- from Europe to the Middle East, South America, or the US; this thing is international! Most of the barn drama comes from the fact that people want to feel a little more significant by criticizing others, boost their egos by deflating others, or justify their choice of barn or trainer by making a case against any other barn or trainer in the area. The fact is you can always find a long list of positive things to say about a barn or a trainer, if you look at it from a positive point of view, and you can always find a lot of negative things to say about it if you look at it from a negative lens.
But here is the thing: You cannot change what people think, or want to think, nor can you control what people can say about you, your trainer, your barn, or your peers. But what you can do is to ignore it and look at it from a different angle.
1. When someone starts to bad mouth another trainer or barn to me and tries to drag me into their stories, I do not engage. And I try to stay away from such people.
2. I surround myself with supportive people towards me and towards others in the industry. I keep toxic people away from my inner circle. You can only achieve more success by surrounding yourself with people that push you up. Spending hours with negative people, who indulge in gossiping and criticizing others, will just make a bitter old person out of you!
3. I see life as a finite amount of time I have left on earth, and I see each day as a finite amount of energy I can spend in 24 hours. I’d rather spend my time with my horses, my dog, my students, or my love ones. I would rather spend my energy in the training of my horses, being fully dedicated mentally to my lessons and strategizing about my business.
4. Putting yourself out there as a rider or a trainer in the show ring takes courage and vulnerability, as you expose yourself to critics. You are taking a risk of failure in front of others, since there is uncertainty of the outcome when you sign up for a competition. As Brenee Brown says, “If you’re not in the arena sweating and showing up, then I’m not interested in your opinion (about my test or the training of my horses).”
Dressage (or Equestrian) is inherently a difficult sport, financially and emotionally draining, hence it is important to surround ourselves with supportive peers and stay away from gossiping and drama. Once you do so, it will open a whole, different, new horizon for you and your horse’s journey.
USDF Gold, Gold Bar, Silver and Bronze Medalist
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