Generally we are so focused on completing our long term goal that we do not give ourselves any credit for the work that we have put in and the things we have achieved working up to this point. We might have spent months practicing our flatwork and jumping techniques, going to training venues but if we do not get that clear round that we have been wanting for, at the show we have had planned for month then that is it, we talk ourselves down and think we may as well give up riding! But really we have probably come a long way since we first planned to go to the show in the training we have done.
Which is why I like to make the point of always having a mini goal each time you ride, even if it is just to enjoy yourself. This way you give yourself something positive to work to and each time you ride you have achieved something. These mini goals are our process goals that enable us to reach our larger process goals.
So, giving ourselves time and achieving our mini goals increase our confidence and will allow us to achieve our outcome goals with less pressure and therefore in a better mind-set. This can relate to those competing their horses, but also to those having general riding lessons, treat each lesson as a mini goal.
My advice would be that each time you ride, think about what you want to get out of that session/hack. Then when you have finished think about what went well and what you achieved, if you didn’t quite achieve what you wanted, that’s ok, there is always tomorrow!