A lot of our confidence problems come from remembering past experiences that prove to us things are scary or from imagining future events and how they could go wrong. Is any of this helpful, really?
The best way to build your confidence is to focus on the here and now. You cannot change the past and you cannot predict the future. Know that your past experiences were presented to you so that you could LEARN and that whatever happens in the future YOU CAN HANDLE IT!
To quote Will Smith from the film After Earth:
‘Fear is not real. The only place that fear can exist is in our thoughts of the future. It is a product of our imagination causing us to fear things that do not at present or may never exist. That is near insanity. Do not misunderstand me, danger is very real but fear is a choice. We are all telling ourselves a story.’
We are all capable of being in the moment. Have you ever watched a movie that is so engrossing that you don’t notice anything else around you? Or been so engaged in a conversation that hours have flown by and you had no idea? That is being in the moment, so connected with the moment and what is happening that nothing else enters your conscious mind.
It takes practice and meditation definitely helps as does Mindfulness. Mindfulness is paying attention, on purpose, in the moment. What can you see, hear, feel or smell right there and then? Use your senses to experience the moment, I recommend things like counting hoofbeats, noticing the rhythmical sound of your horse’s footfall, paying attention to your breathing, are you breathing into your diaphragm? Can you follow the breath all the way in and then back out again? Can you slow it down? Checking your riding position, your hands, seat, legs, feet etc. You can pay detailed attention to absolutely anything to anchor yourself into the moment, find what works best for you.