Tuesday, August 09, 2011

Perfect practice takes practice

My goal is to live the saying "Practice doesn't make perfect, perfect practice makes perfect".

When I talk about perfection, I am not talking about the performance of my dog. It is about my own plan. Taking control of my emotions (a hard one for me as I can be an emotional trainer - not necessarily bad but not always good!) Watching my dog closely and responding as needed. Not moving too quickly, or slowly. Finding the balance.

Not that everything has to be perfect all the time. But I believe that perfect practice is a skill that has to be developed.

It's also not about always having the answers. As long as you are planning your sessions and reviewing your ideal finished picture, where you are in relation to that snapshot and your successes to date, then you are on the right track.

The other day I found a note to myself in one of my old sketch books. Alone on it's own spread, it read "I know what won't work. Doing nothing." Being a perfectionist, I have found myself in situations where I don't even try because I am afraid of failing. Now THAT is sad!

Perfection is not a place anyone can stay for long. But some people reach it more than others and that's simply because it's part of their working plan.


1 comment:

Karen Thomason/Gordon Setter Crossing said...

I believe in the same principal. So many people ask me, "will this Gordon Setter puppy be a good hunter?". My answer is always the same, "You're starting with great genes, a great bird dog nose, and a natural instinct to point. What you do with the dog, will make all the difference." You can't let a dog sit in the back yard for a year, then expect them to perform their first day hunting. Our dogs have a natural instinct to hunt, but if their owner doesn't teach them patience and control to "hold" on the bird until the hunter gets there, what good is a point? Dogs learn perfection through practicing.....so, it should be "Perfect Practice".