Get rid of it.
A word I hear my trainers use most often is relax. Relax!, relax! Yelled from across the way because if it weren’t yelled, I wouldn’t hear him, or her. Depending on the day I could have one or the other yelling at me, sometimes I get a combination of both.
Sit back, put your hand forward, look where you’re going, bend your elbows, relax your shoulders, keep your legs out, sit in the middle, relax your back, look up, go on, say the word!
If all goes well and I remember to do all of that, relax all of me while giving everything of me, then I will be able to successfully complete a run with or without a cow while adrenaline is wildly pumping throughout my body.
The parallels of personal life experiences and life itself is real. I am reminded of the Robert Pirsig book, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance. I have read this book numerous times. Its metaphorical connections to the main character’s roadtrip journey with his son, working on and maintaining his motorcycle in good working order, and life, are poetic.
Riding a horse in competition has many similarities. It’s all about what you put into it, and how you treat and handle your craft. There are few things one can truly manage on any given day. Remind myself to give it up, control that is. Things go so much smoother, for everyone.