Today Bentley shoved through the gate when I was bringing another horse in. Again.
It’s his latest thing, I think a sign that he feels he isn’t getting enough training time (a fair point, really) and is taking matters into his own hands.
He’s driving me crazy, makes everything a little bit harder as I then have to put him back where he belongs before I can do what I needed to do with the horse I intended to catch. And then I feel guilty that I’m not doing something with Bentley, but I also don’t want to reinforce shoving through gates so I can’t right then even if I did have the time and inclination.
Frustrating … until I remembered that the mule who is driving me crazy because he’s TOO keen to be with me, and learn new things, and go to work, is the same one who was lost in the woods for three days just a few short years ago because he wouldn’t let me get close enough to catch him.
It’s really important to remember how far we’ve come, especially when we’re struggling. Sure, this might seem hard today, but remember what it was like a month ago, and what you were working on then. Or a year ago, or longer.
Imagine three years ago how happy I would’ve been to learn that one day my biggest frustration with Bentley would be convincing him to stay AWAY from me!
Keeping a training diary, or regularly videoing your sessions, or just looking back through your photos from previous training sessions can help you remember to celebrate what you’ve already accomplished with your horse, and put into perspective what you’re working on now.
Instead of always focusing on where you’re trying to go, take a moment today to look back, and see how far you’ve come. What are you doing with ease today that your past self would be amazed at?