Thursday, January 7, 2010

Completely Unprepared...Yet Completely OK With It :)

Ah...the feeling of self doubt...I know it well.

And I SHOULD have these thoughts of self doubt about the USDAA trial this weekend :) My dogs haven't trialed since USDAA Nationals...and their training has been...well...sporadic AT BEST :)

Klink has a so-called retrained A-frame, but she hasn't done an A-frame in two weeks. NOT ONE. Doubtful that will hold up as a retrain with no RETRAINING! LOL

Winter is here, barns are cold and after this recent cold spell and the resulting muscle injuries some of the dogs have sustained, I have decided my dogs health and soundness take presidence to having a perfect January trial.

aka--I DON'T CARE :) What an amazing place to be as a handler!! To not worry, to not care about what the dogs do, if they are crazy, if they are rusty, if I am rusty! I can honestly say I don't care! I just really am not worrying about the outcome.

Amazing really...to not worry about the outcome. If you think about it...not caring about whether I Q or not, whether I mess up or not. Just going to run the dogs, and probably do a lot of laughing :)

I love this, the peace it brings me. The knowledge that agility really isn't the serious thing it used to be for me. It was a GOAL for awhile, now it is more a journey. And as it has become less of a SERIOUS thing, and since that change...my dogs and I have started doing well, imagine that :)

I don't train dogs all the time, I enjoy being with them, hiking, playing, enjoying them. And also enjoying friends, family and life (even a bit without dogs). I am enjoying the NOW. Not always planning for the future.

Stockwork has always given me this inner peace...and it has taken me a lot more time to reach it in regards to agility. Probably why I am always drawn back to working stock with my dogs, peace and balance seem to be what it brings to my life. And to see it happen also now in agility is a great thing :)

What has made this change in me? Honestly I can't tell you, but I love it, and it is great not caring about things, not being as serious, not giving as much energy to what MIGHT happen, but rather what is happening RIGHT NOW.

What a WONDERFUL place to be :)

5 comments:

Diana said...

Im not sure if you will answer this or not but... Do you think that you are more ok with things because of the level of success you have had? To me, having two dogs in the USDAA finals is quiet an accomplishment. You still seem to have the drive you need because lets face it, part of your dogwalk is in your house, LoL. So what Im asking is, do you think if you felt that way early on you would have had the same success? I was just wondering what mental outlook you think someone needs to be successful in agility. Just wondering. Thanks, Diana

fulltiltbcs said...

Great question, one I had to think about before I answered :)

Definetly running in the finals puts all the local trials on a different level mentally...it makes them easier to stay focused and not nervous about things. But that is regardless if you do well or not at those events. My first time going was 2008 and I made it into Semi-finals and that was it. But it still made the local trials easier. If you can go to a National event, I would...it changes your perspective on a lot of things :)

I DO have drive to do agility...as you stated, there is a dw in my house :) But...it is a different drive, to train my dogs well, make things easy for them to learn and execute, and safe. Not that of Q'ing, winning or making it to this or that. Just the drive to train agility, not worry about the outcomes and "what ifs". If that makes sense?

YES, I do think if that would have been my way of thinking from the beginning, I would have had the same success, but I would have enjoyed the journey more!

However, I also think it is part of the journey...one that most likely everyone goes through during their training/competing lives. A part I would have rather skipped through, but a part that made me realize what REALLY mattered, the dogs.

I am by no means an expert on what it takes, but I think the more you concentrate on the dogs and what they need, and yourself and what you need--the better off you will be. Worrying about whether you can Q,win,place etc...isn't the right mindset for agility, according to me anyway :)

Do I want to win? Sure! I won't deny that (and those that DO deny it really are not telling how they truely feel)...but that is no longer the focus of what I want. I want fast weaves, I want a screaming fast A-frame, a SAFE A-frame. etc etc etc.

I hope this helps, it sure has given me a lot to think about :)

Diana said...

Thanks, Diana

Sarah said...

can i just copy and past this post and label it as mine? i feel exactly the same way these days. we have our first trial of the year too, and i am just gonna giv'er and have a blast with my dogs.

i'll quote the daughter of a mullet-man

"Ain't about how fast i get there
Ain't about what's waiting on the other side
it's the climb"

... i really didn;t want to quote Miley Cyrus, but what the heck.

have fun this weekend!

Debra Kay said...

I am trying to focus on each obstacle and not worry about stringing it all together. The stringing requires MY brain, and I'm sure that is our weakest link. The narrow focus is helping me not be so anxious.

I don't think that a little anxiety as a bad thing-it's what drives us to do better. My goal right now is by the end of the year to have competed in a few trials. Until I actually compete, I really can't list a next goal-we'll just see how it goes.