What is a perspective? It is a point of view about something. We have many different perspectives and some serve us well. But some keep us stuck in a place while we spin our wheels making no forward progress. There are many ways we can get stuck in different perspectives, but today I want to talk about negativity and how it really doesn’t serve us well. Negative thinking is a common problem in riding. When people have a negative outlook in their day to day lives they often carry that to their riding as well. But even some generally positive people can get stuck in negativity when trying to solve a riding problem.
This negative outlook ensures negative outcomes. So it becomes a vicious cycle. A great example of this is when a rider is practicing jumping a course of jumps. Focusing on one bad jump or distance creates a negative visualization in the rider’s mind’s eye for the next round of jumps. Often the same mistake will be repeated and more mistakes will be added on course. And so the cycle begins. The rider keeps imagining negative outcomes and it becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.
A change in perspective from negative to positive can turn that cycle upside down. Imagine a course of eight jumps and seven of the eight had missed distances but one had a great distance. That would be a pretty easy scenario for negativity. But if the rider focused on what worked for the good distance and put that positive image and feel in their mind as they did the next course, odds are pretty good that the good distance would be repeated more than once. And so that cycle would begin. A simple shift in perspective to a positive outcome can create great results. This positive outlook also allows a rider to look at any problems they have with an analytical instead of a judgmental eye. This enables them to make the changes necessary to improve what isn’t working while they build on what is. It also allows a rider to truly enjoy their passion instead feeling bad when they ride.
When you go out to ride next time take a moment to focus on positivity and begin your ride with a positive intention. Stop being so hard on yourself and bring some lightness into your rides. When you feel yourself going down that negative path, stop yourself and ask, how is this serving me? Then ask how would a positive mindset serve me? Then make the shift in perspective. It will take work, so don’t beat yourself up if you get negative. Just recognize it and make the shift. Little by little positivity will become a new norm for you. Bring this new outlook to all areas of your life. I am sure you will reap the rewards!!!
Feel free to share your experiences with shifting from a negative to a positive perspective.