As a result of the process of choosing a new riding instructor, I’ve now had riding lessons with 4 different instructors (including the original). Every single one of them has said to me: “Don’t try so hard.”
Readers, you will be pleased to know that I kept my temper on each occasion, despite internal pressure to the contrary. I may have rolled my eyes but that was as far as I expressed myself over the matter. I realise that “don’t try too hard” is the advice I need to hear and probably the only way they can communicate what they need me to do to improve (apart from the other eternal imperative: Relax!), but it is a most frustrating thing to listen to, and leads to me trying increasingly hard not to try too hard. Clearly this is not the desired effect.
As usual I expect the answer to this is to re-program my responses. To stop trying and do; to stop doing and be. This will take some time to achieve. I think I’ve probably been trying too hard all of my conscious existence and it wouldn’t surprise me if before that time I was trying too hard to form my consciousness.
Still, at least I’m not the only one with these issues or there wouldn’t be any classic film quotes to draw on. Here’s a couple of instructors I haven’t tried and what they would say if they taught me:
Yoda (Star Wars): No, try not. Do or do not. There is no try.
Morpheus (The Matrix): Stop trying to ride him and ride him!
Maybe I’d get a change of soundtrack if I tried lessons with Mr. Miyagi:
Mr. Miyagi (Karate kid) : Balance is key. Balance good, riding good. Everything good. Balance bad, better pack up, go home. Understand?
Hmm. Maybe it’s just as well I’ve already chosen an instructor.