When I was young I loved to dance…My dance teacher still writes to me and calls me “her tiny dancer” because I was often the smallest in the group.
I was usually put front and centre in the dance, not because I was the best, but because I was the most confident and I never forgot the steps…
I thought about why I never forgot the dance steps recently, and it was because I didn’t think about it. The dancers that would lose focus were the ones who thought about what came next instead of just doing it.
I find it interesting now to note that most of the people who are worried about what comes next in life usually mess up the step they are on now.
That, I have realised, is what I was doing with Batialo. I was thinking too much. I was worrying on the next day, and the last ride, and what he might do, instead of just thinking on how he was right now.
I would go to the horses and think he was so good yesterday that I would be too relaxed, or I would go thinking on something I had planned for tomorrow and he would know my head was elsewhere.
So I decided, just to stop thinking about it…
I also blocked out the “advice” that I would never be able to ride the horse, or that I wasn’t suited to him, because only if I believe that does it becomes true.
I wrote to mum one day about the pain in my hip, and she said “is there anything you can do?”, and I said no, so she said “then stop thinking about it”.
It sounds so simple, but honestly it’s incredible how much shit you get rid of if you just stop thinking about shit.
How many relationships are ruined because people expect people to be like they were yesterday, or place unfair expectations on how they should be tomorrow?
How many good days go bad because we are worrying about what might happen tomorrow, or what we should have done today?
I can’t tell you how many times I have gone to bed in pain, and not slept all night worrying about how I might feel in the morning.
Then, one day I just decided, to not think about it.
Have you ever gone out to ride your horse and pictured yourself falling off, or worse pictured yourself hurt after falling off?
Well don’t, because guess what??… it doesn’t help.
Whatever we do in life there is always going to be an element of fear or failure or even injury.
My advice is, don’t think about it.
Be smart of course, but be smart in this moment, and not the next. Worry about yourself right now not yourself yesterday, or tomorrow.
It’s good to have a plan, but it has to allow for ups and downs. One of my favourite things about Portugal is if you go to lunch there is no end time. Lunch ends when it ends, and everyone at the lunch is right where they should be in that moment, not rushing off to the next thing.
People learn to appreciate just being there, and to not think about the rest of the stuff going on in their lives.
It’s interesting, but not thinking takes work. You don’t just wake up one day and go “oh super I’m not thinking or worrying about anything”. You have to find things that help you be in the moment, or give you time to yourself.
Some people meditate, some paint, some play video games, or sport…(or golf) ;).
But whatever it is that helps you not think…well, that is something worth holding on to.