At the same time, we may take into consideration that horses tend to be extremely forgiving. This comes in handy, as it further limits the possible fallout of an honest mistake, in that we really then lack any reason to be overly afraid of the consequences of doing our homework, then carefully and to the fullest of our capabilities giving it a try and then failing.
For me the ‘checklist’ hence has become:
(1) “Do I know what I am doing?” – of course not, nobody does, but at least to a certain degree I am comfortable with.
(2) “Am I able to do it?” – or do I lack some skill or mindset that I have to train as a prerequisite?
(3) “Is she able to do it?” – or is there something that my horse lacks at this time for performing that exercise?
(4) “What is the worst thing that could go wrong?” – and did I consider mitigation measures for the risks involved?
(5) “What is the probability of failure?” – and is there a way to lower that probability by setting us up differently?
As soon as these few questions can be answered in a satisfying manner, the worst thing that can happen is an honest mistake.
But wait, there is one more thing! I’ll include it in the hints section that starts right here:
Your failure would turn from honest to stupid, if you were to blindly follow through with your exercise, although in the midst of it, you notice things going south already. “Failure is always an option”, so don’t try to avoid it at any cost by proceeding and thereby make things worse.
Go through the checklist stated above, but please, don’t excessively contemplate points (4) and (5) – the way things could go wrong. Visualizing each and every horror scenario will significantly increase your odds of failing, because you will shift into a negative mindset and thereby, albeit unconsciously, set yourself up for failure.
In case of failure, remember that “there is no wrong way, just a long way” and keep experimenting, because “to get to the point of connection that I have with my horses today I had to be willing to be too soft, too strong, not effective, and love my mistakes as much as the good times in harmonious dance.”