Westminster called - it wants you to have FUN! goals mental skills Jun 02, 2021

Proximity being what it is, I have many friends who are headed off to Westminster this month. Unlike previous years, this time, it will take place in a pastoral setting (think natural grass) away from the hustle and bustle of the city and cement. I am performing all the good-weather rituals for...

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When real life interrupts your plan (or, Mox we've gotta RUN!) goals mental skills May 04, 2021

The other weekend I was running agility with Moxie. As the cruelty of the schedule gods would have it, we were in the first and last classes of the day.

Or so I thought.

So there I was hanging out in the parking lot, spread out in my end spot with Indie lounging in the sun, and I just happened to...

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Is comparison stealing your joy? goals mental skills Apr 20, 2021

Theodore Roosevelt famously said, “Comparison is the thief of joy.”

Social media has almost set us up to compare our real lives with those carefully curated and shared on platforms designed to judge. (Don’t believe me? Think about the origins of Facebook!). And social platforms...

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Mistakes are "sticky!" mental skills Apr 06, 2021

Get over it.
You’ve just got to let go.
It’s time to move on.

I’ve got platitudes for days when it comes to helping all of us to let go of a “mistake” or NQ that still haunts us. But they are all useless if we’re not ready to hear them. Sometimes we just aren’t done beating ourselves up.

Letting go,...

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Where oh where did the stamina go? dog training mental skills Feb 04, 2021

I get hung up on words or concepts periodically. “Curiosity” was my word pre-2020. I was trying to get myself and others to look at training challenges with openness and wonder instead of judgment and failure. I still love curiosity and it has shifted my training and feedback habit,...

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Buck-Up Buttercup (Or Not) anxiety & fear mental skills Nov 20, 2020

It’s not okay to be afraid.

At least, that’s what we’re taught. By parents, and teachers, and coaches … all working to make us better, tougher, more resilient.

Yet adulthood can be even scarier than those monsters under the bed or taking that first “leap” in...

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Your beliefs are getting in your way. mental skills Oct 09, 2019

In talking to a client the other day, I compared limiting beliefs to a giant suitcase we insist on dragging around. It’s heavy, the wheels face different directions and we don’t even know how it got this way. All we know is, we can’t put it down and it impacts where we can go.

...

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What my 10 days on the road teaches us about protecting our rituals. mental skills Oct 03, 2019
Photo by Kim Perry

I recently took about 10 days and drove back to Virginia from Colorado to judge. While it was a quick trip, I was floored with how much I was thrown off my routine. From what I ate to how I spent my days to working the dogs … it all seemed to go to hell!

It got me...

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Borrowing from Teddy & Brene mental skills Aug 20, 2019

I recently shared one of my all-time favorite quotes with the handlers in the  Q-Confidence Masterclass. I consider it a sports quote, but really it’s an excerpt from a speech given by former President Teddy Roosevelt in Paris in 1910 following a year of travel:

“It is...

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Get off the strugglebus. mental skills Aug 06, 2019

People love an underdog. In movies, in books, on the small screen … we cheer for the little guy or the girl in the back of the room to finally get the glory they deserve.

We love this archetype because it’s rooted in fairness, in being able to believe that it all works out in the...

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A tale of two migraines. best of the blog mental skills Jul 30, 2019
Photo Ruth Nielsen

Once upon a time my beloved “Novice A” dog, Karma, got invited to the AKC Agility Invitational the same year we also finished third in the inaugural AKC Rally National Championship – we were having quite the year! Karma was running well, feeling well and we...

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3 steps to tame pressure. confidence mental skills Jul 10, 2019
Photo Chris Stefanac

In the first of our blog series on gaining confidence, we started with ring nerves and their tie to the fears we take with us into the ring. This time we are going to look at pressure, where it comes from and how we can tackle it for what it really is.

“Pressure”...

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