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The Year That Changed us all

Towards the end of 2019 a lot of people seemed glad to see the end of what they described a tough year… Little did they know what ley ahead. First the devastating bushfires and then, well… COVID-19. But was 2020 really a terrible year? 

I like to think it wasn’t. It was a year that taught us a lot and a year that forced us to change. We all agree that change is not always something we readily and willingly embrace and, therefore, a little force can be a good thing.

We had to learn to adapt, to abandon plans and to make new ones. There were many things we were taking for granted, like visiting friends, going on holidays, going to competitions and taking our horses to the beach. All these things suddenly became things of the past.

Who would have thought that aeroplanes would be grounded, factories shut and travel coming to a grinding halt, not just in Australia but all over the world?

Personally, I felt a deep sense of gratitude for all the things I have and which I never really appreciated. I also found myself a little out of my comfort zone as I was having to adapt, a lot.

As most of you know, my previous years had been taken up with traveling constantly for clinics and suddenly, I found myself at home. A nice change for sure, but like everyone else, we still have to make a living, particularly as I had just separated from my husband and taken over our farm.

Talk about timing!

As always, we can focus on the downsides, become victims of stress and start cursing the world and everyone in it, or we can step up, count our blessings (and blessed we are compared to others) and adapt. 

Knowing that the universe will always have my back as long as I am clear in communicating what I need and what I want, I was confident that things would fall into place, and they did. 

What I have learned, is that I have to get out of the way. Like many, I fall into the trap of putting blinkers on when setting goals. I get so driven in achieving what I have set out to do, that I don’t see the other opportunities around me. 

COVID-19 has taught me to take the blinkers off, mainly because it caught me by surprise, and I was not ready to set a business goal that would give me the income I needed without the usual travelling.

So, I had to learn to trust. I knew the outcome I wanted but I had no idea on how to achieve it.

Like always in these moments, it is meditation that gets me through. Whenever my head jumped into overtime, trying to figure things out and pushing stuff though, I stopped, sat

down and meditated. Whenever stress overtook my mind and I started to worry, I stopped and meditated.

You might think I am crazy, but the proof it worked is that I am still here, with a farm that is mine, a financial settlement achieved and all payments up to date. I tell you, meditating works.

The key is to get out of the survival emotions and into the creative emotions. 

In other words, the more you stress the more you create stressful situation because all you see and all you react to are the stressful situations.

When you focus on the desired outcome, you set free the emotions that are attached to the desired outcomes and you start to create.

There were times when I had bills to pay and I did not know how to pay them, but I refused to let the worry and stress turn on the panic button; instead, I focused on gratitude, on the amazing opportunity to own such a beautiful place, on knowing that I was going to be ok, on how grateful I am for the love to my beautiful horses. Each-and-every-time I focused on this, something amazing happened.

Money always ended up in my account – not a lot, but enough to do what I needed to do. And step by step it led me through the messy, sticky time.

When you think about it, my experience is not that dissimilar from riding. We all know how a ride ends up when we focus on all the things that can go wrong!

I want to leave you with this; if you can’t wait to give 2020 the flick and to move on to 2021 then just stop for a moment. Instead of pushing it away, take stock. 

What have you learned? Where have you grown and where have you surprised yourself?

Take the opportunities that 2020 gave you and embrace them. You don’t know what lies ahead, so don’t be that hasty to push something away.

2021 will be what you make of it. It can be your best year or it can be your worst – you can make the choice. 

I say let’s make it the best year yet. Become really clear on what it is you want, make changes, be brave and stretch yourself.

When you set goals, take the blinkers off because there might be something out there that is so much better than what you set out to achieve. Remain flexible but never compromise on your choice to be happy, your willingness to love and your knowing that you will be ok, no matter what.

Did you know that Tanja offers Mindset Phone Coaching Sessions?

These are one-on-one sessions helping riders to find practical and effective solutions to the problems they are facing, such as:

  • Let go of limiting beliefs
  • Overcome fear and confidence issues
  • Develop yourself personally and professionally – on and off the horse
  • Learn how to set goals and fully prepare yourself to go out and achieve them.

Often, all it takes to find the answers is a different perspective!

To find out more, contact Tanja by email: tanja@tanjamitton.com

Tanja Mitton

Tanja Mitton is a riding coach and Neuro Linguistic Programming (NLP) master coach with over 25 years of coaching and competition experience. She has been working with the Australian high performance squad as a mindset coach and, in 2012, was invited to the Australian Institute of Sport to present a workshop on how to improve the Mindset of Australian Coaches. Author of the book ‘Seven Steps to the Mindset of an Equestrian Champion’, Tanja conducts clinics all around Australia and her seminars have been approved by Equestrian Australia for NCAS coach accreditation points.

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