I used to be a results based trainer.
My time spent with my horses was all in pursuit of my competitive goals.
I thought it was rewarding then. I thought it was fun.
Then some things shifted. My horses moved into my backyard, and I became their primary caregiver, spending a lot more time with them. A health challenge kept me from spending dedicated time training towards my goals for a time. I learned more – I’m always learning more – and new training approaches and philosophies dramatically changed how I do things.
Gradually, without me even noticing, my priorities changed. I still enjoy competing, but it’s such a small part of what I do with my horses.
These days, it’s the relationship that matters to me the most. It’s having fun together, learning new things, and challenging ourselves together as a team.
And I learned something important.
When you focus on the relationship, the results come. They happen, even if you don’t prioritize them, and because of the relationship the results mean a lot more.
Now I prioritize the relationship with my horses over everything. And no matter what the results we achieve together, I always feel like we’re winning.