I remember getting asked in an interview once, “Do you feel like what you are teaching now is different from what you taught five years ago?”, and my answer was, I certainly hope so!
One of the things that I’m conscious of is not planting my flag in the sand for any one way of doing things; a particular training technique, a “style” of teaching, a way of going about things.
If there’s one thing I work hard on, it’s maintaining a constant curiosity about how things work and why. If something comes along that I can see disproves what I have done previously or shows me there’s a better way of going about things, then I have no problem in letting go of how I’ve taught or done things up until that point. New information and knowledge are exciting. It’s nothing to be feared.
The thing is, conceptually, this sounds like an easy thing to do but practically speaking, it can be anything but. With my work, there are things that I’ve spent years putting together, only to realise that I needed to change things completely, to take it from the top. Something that I’ve done on more than one occasion (I give myself a 48-hour window of crying into my pillow first).
It’s also shown me just how much the learning process is about unlearning; that to embrace something new, you have to be willing to let something go. And sometimes, that thing forms a big part of your identity. I see often how riders and trainers reject information, not because it’s wrong, but because it goes against what they may have spent years dedicating themselves too. And at the end of the day, it’s too much process. They’d rather preserve what they know than let it go.
I just spent the weekend changing up my website after realizing the words no longer really captured what I do. We move forward and then everything else needs to catch up around us. It made me think how we are all and should be in a constant process of revision. Of learning and updating.
Of taking things in and letting things go.