ResolutionsOkay, so I know I’m a little tardy with my New Year’s resolutions, but hey, better late than never, right? When I stopped to think about what I really wanted to focus on in 2016, one thing just kept coming up. Horses. I toyed with writing out a list of the things I wanted to accomplish with Luc in the next 12 months – jump an entire course at 3’, take part in a small schooling show, go on more hacks. But those all seemed so small and insignificant in the grand scheme of things. Sure, it’s important to have goals to work toward, but that’s exactly what those items are—just goals.

They aren’t resolutions, at least not to me. A resolution to me is something that profoundly changes your life, or your outlook on it. Would my life be changed for the better if I accomplished any of those equestrian goals? I might experience some temporary happiness, or a boost in confidence, but my fundamental self wouldn’t truly be altered. So instead, I decided to take a step back, look at the bigger picture, and figure out what would. So without further ado, here are my three resolutions for 2016.

Ride More. Stress Less.

Riding is an escape for me. A way to release some stress, get some exercise, and spend some time doing something just for me. Sure, Luc’s involved since he’s the horse I’m actually riding, but taking time to work with him is one of the few times during the week that I push aside everything else I have going on in my life (or in my head!) and just focus on one single thing. And I happen to love that one thing.
I think so many of us get too caught up in our own lives. Work stress. Family stress. Financial stress. Stress, stress, stress. It’s a plague that has taken over nearly the entire population. In 2016 I resolve to spend more time riding because it grants me the freedom to spend less time stressing about the little things in life.

Ride More. Worry Less.

Let’s face it, everyone has insecurities. For me, I find a lot of them seem to come out in the saddle. Do I look too big for my horse? Are people judging me based on that horrible distance I just got? Am I getting too old for this (nope!)? It’s easy to think about all of the negative things people could be thinking about you at any one given time. The reality is, it’s probably all just in my head.

This year I resolve to leave the insecurities where they belong—in the manure pile. Instead of obsessing what others think, I’m going to focus on having fun. It’s why I got back into riding, and it’s important I don’t let that sentiment fall to the wayside.

Ride More. Love More.

I’ve already said it, but it bears repeating. I love riding. I love it with my whole heart. It brings me joy and it brings me peace. So this year, for my final resolution, I vow to enjoy every second of it. To take each and every moment I have with horses and savour them. Treasure them. I vow to find the positive in every ride—even when it’s a struggle. I will enjoy completely this thing that has wormed its way into my heart and become so entrenched in my life I can’t imagine ever giving it up again.