Issue No. 58
January 2014

Happy New Year! I love this time of the year ... it's always a time of new beginnings. In the Personal Performance article I share some thoughts for you ... perhaps a new, energizing, and ultimately productive way to replace "resolutions". Let me know what you think.

One thing I did get from Santa was a new GoPro headcam. Santa rocks! I'm looking forward to having fun with this new, little toy. Watch out! It's a bit of a challenge though to get sneak shots and be unnoticed with it on my head!

I know recently it's been soooo cold in many parts of the country, including here in Texas.

During one of the coldest days, a couple of bandits visited the barn!

I promptly ran them out of town!

Stay warm and safe. Enjoy the newsletter.
Personal Performance Article
"A Better Way Than New Year's Resolutions?"

It all sounds like a good idea ... to make resolutions for 2014.

But for me, the word "resolution" has some sadness to it ... and drudgery. It's almost as if to say, "This part of my life is really messy, so I'm going to sacrifice and be better."  The bottom line is that most resolutions never make it past Day 4 or 5. And, they have a feeling of dread about them. 


I have some replacement ideas for the old resolution concept. It's a 3-part process that can take you into an awareness of what you love and want to do ... and then can help you achieve your dreams through consistent, small, fun steps ... ultimately to success!


1. Set Outcome Goals
and focus on the excitement of the reasons why you set them.

 You want to make it to a top ranking in your discipline's year end awards?

You want to take some adventuresome trail rides in State Parks you've never even dreamed possible before because you knew it wasn't safe because of your riding skills ... but now you will be able to do so because of becoming a safer, skilled, confident rider?

These are examples of Outcome Goals ... goals that are measurable. (You'll know by your year-end ranking, or if you made it to those state parks by December.)

When you choose Outcome Goals, focus on the EXHILARATION of the goal ... how much fun you will have ... all the show adventures along the way ... how having better horsemanship improves the quality of your experience with horses for a lifetime, etc.

Get pumped. Focus on the benefits ... the real reasons why you are setting the goal. Only choose goals that get you super excited.

2. Put Rituals in place that lead you toward your destination

Candles remind of rituals. (:
The word "ritual" is another warm and fuzzy word for habit.

It's a manageable little thing you do everyday (or most days) that keeps you headed in the right direction for what you want to do.

It's all about incremental steps. Easy, daily rituals are fabulous baby steps. Choose rituals that you ENJOY.

For an Outcome Goal like an award, it could be as simple as watching ... everyday ... with great intensity ... winning rides on YouTube and totally loving being that rider in the magic of your imagination.
For a goal like going to 3 challenging trail rides, it might be to do something everyday like getting more info on the trails or studying articles or videos about the horsemanship skills you need to learn.
Do something everyday in your mind that hones your skills towards where you want to go. Make it a ritual. Don't miss it. Make it fun! The key is making it a habitl.    Over the Saddle

3. Set Performance Goals for each time you ride that keep you moving towards your goals in Step #1. 

Performance Goals are manageable things you can do and control, like staying calm, or keeping your eyes focused in a certain direction, or softening your rigid shoulders.

Note that the Outcome Goals in Step #1 are totally out of your direct control. It's important to really understand this.

But because Performance Goals are TOTALLY in your control, you constantly keep moving toward your Outcome Goals ... baby step by baby step ... Performance Goal by Performance Goal.

When you add the results of your Performance Goals (always achievable) to the results of your daily Rituals (always achievable), you stay psyched and sustain exhilarated momentum toward your Outcome Goals.

Then, at the end of the year, no matter what the external, measurable result of the Outcome Goals (out of your control,) you did absolutely EVERYTHING you could do to get you there and had fun along the way ... (all within your control). There's huge satisfaction in knowing you've done everything you could possibly do.

Go for it this year. Pick an Outcome Goal that you gets you pumped ... do a daily Ritual that's intense, fun and meaningful ... and set Performance Goals when you ride.  
Horsemanship Article
"Practice Winter Riding by 'Engraving'"


Do you ever find yourself with the "winter blues" because you live in a climate where you can't ride for months ... or maybe you are recovering from an injury so you have to spend time off of your horse.


An author I like a lot, Daniel Coyle, talks about talent hotbeds all over the world using an approach to teaching that is up front and center in their programs.


Coyle calls in "Engraving" in his book, "The Little Book of Talent".


"Basically, they (students) watch the skill being performed closely, and with great intensity, over and over, until they build a high-definition mental blueprint."


Many places known for teaching world class performers have times when the students must listen or watch fabulous performances in their endeavor, over, and over, and over, and over, and over again. 


YouTube videos could be used to "engrave" your brain with what you want to do with your horse. You could also ownload audios could to "engrave."  


The key is INTENSELY experiencing the videos or audio over and over, (etc.) again.


Feel the magic of the performance. Become that rider. Become that decision-maker. Enjoy. The key is getting into it ... get intense. 

Cutting Article
"To Stop the Flow or to Not Stop the Flow?"  
When do you stop the flow of cattle to cut a cow you're after ... and when do you let the flow continue to move around you?

When it comes to making cuts, it's impossible to give a hard and fast rule. But there are two basic "patterns" of situations that call for different actions.

I chose a YouTube video of Austin Shepard that demonstrates these basic patterns.

Pattern #1 ... Don't stop the flow if your cow is on the outside and at the end of the flow. Let the cattle roll around you.

1st example: Load this video and watch the beginning of Austin's approach to the herd at about the :15 seconds mark. He lets the cattle roll to his left, which allows the traffic to clear, and the cow he wants to travel can move toward the middle of the arena. At just the right time (:27) he completes his cut of the second last cow.   
Bamacat & Austin Shepard - 2012 NCHA Open Futurity Reserve Champion 
Bamacat/Austin Shepard, 2012 NCHA Open Futurity Res Champ
2nd example of pattern #1: Start watching to see the yellow cow that is on the end and the outside of the flow. If you stop the frame at 1:14, you'll see the yellow cow to the far right of your screen. Start the video and see how seamlessly Austin makes the cut. He does not stop any other cattle.

Pattern #2 ... Stop the flow if your cow is toward the middle or beginning of the flow ... or close to you and on the inside of the moving cattle. Warning: this is a dangerous place to cut a specific cow in terms of getting tangled up with other cattle, or ending up making a cut on the outer third of the arena.

At about 2:05, Austin appears to maneuver the grey baldy to the outside of the flow, but the cow ultimately goes inside of the flow. Watch from there to see how Austin stops the flow and makes his cut.          

Get some fireworks going this year.

#1 ... Have Fun!
#2 ... Set Outcome Goals
#3 ... Become a Better Horseman (woman :-)
#4 ... Study Your Kind of Riding With a Vengeance
#5 ... Set Performance Goals When You Ride
#6 ... Expect Great Things
#7 ... Laugh at Yourself
#8 ... See #1

Happy New Year!!!
In This Issue
A short video for smiles & a message to never give up when it comes to going for what you want
105-Year-Old Man Bill Mohr Receives His High School Diploma
105-Year-Old Man, Bill Mohr Achieves a Dream

Future Events  
on My Calendar
Cutting Clinics:
Horsemanship/Working Cattle/Cutting/Clinic: 
Personal Performance

INSIGHTS with Dr. Jim Loehr
Mental Makeover 30 Day Inspiration Masthead
Rider Renewal
Click any box to go 
to that page.
Barrel Racing

barrel racing wtih confidence

Click any box to
see more



the center theme of your goals and rituals.


Click any box to    
see more.

New Cowtrac Logo

A Video for  
How to Work  
the Flag 

Flag Fundamentals
By Barbra Schulte



Click any box to
see more.    

Copyright © 20XX. All Rights Reserved.