By Rob Jacobs
Throughout the year, I’ve come in contact with people in the equestrian community who have mentioned being unsure of what their purpose is and how to find it. Hearing this as often as I have has motived me to include it in this month’s column. I would encourage you to read my June column, “An Industry in Need of Your Talent.” In that column, I spoke on the seemingly unlimited career options within our sport and there being a place for everyone to excel professionally. Everyone has been given talent in an area, and one’s passion may be related to the area of natural talent.
In this column, I’d like to encourage equestrians to work to identify the areas of their passion. What are you most excited to do within the sport? Can you do those things so long that you forget to use the bathroom or are late eating lunch? These two questions may lead you toward your answer if you do not already know. It’s possible for an equestrian to be passionate in a few different areas within the sport. I am most passionate about judging horse shows and training riders. There are many areas I thoroughly enjoy within the sport, but those two areas are the ones I am most passionate about.
Once you have a better understanding of what you may be passionate about, you must reflect more to identify what your purpose within the equestrian community may be. I am a spiritual person, not to be confused with religious. Spirituality and religion are not the same. As a spiritual person, I believe we all have a purpose for being alive and being in a community with so much potential, such as the equestrian community. Your purpose is likely to involve serving a community or group of people other than yourself. You will likely be using your talents in order to serve in an area you’re passionate about. I have always believed in the importance of becoming so skilled at what you do that your talent is undeniable and noticed by even those who may not fully understand the industry. Let your work speak for itself.
The economy in which we live is service-driven. People want to pay for things they can’t do themselves or choose not to do themselves. Because most industries have more than one service provider, it becomes essential to provide a level of service better than the competitors. I have found it easier over the years to provide a high level of service in the areas I am most passionate about. It would be harder for me to easily provide a high level of service in areas outside the areas of my “gifts.” Because I followed the “talent-passion-purpose” steps, over the years I was able to identify what my purpose is by my mid to late 20s. It’s never too late to start the identification process.
I notice a difference in those who navigate the world in which we live with purpose and some level of understanding as to why they are in the community they are. This is noticeably different compared to equestrians who navigate the industry and who have not yet discovered their purpose. I firmly believe it is our responsibility to work on identifying the areas of our passion, thus leading us toward our purpose. My talent in an area led to me discovering my passion. Once I discovered my passion, I was able to focus on what my purpose is. My purpose is to serve members within the equestrian community in the areas of competition judging and training riders. I enjoy providing a selfless level of service in these areas and it’s not too difficult for me since I follow the “talent-passion-purpose” steps. I hope you will take some time to reflect on what I have described in this column and think about how you can identify your purpose for existing in this community, because you certainly have a purpose for being with us.
Rob, riding Carraway, encourages equestrians to take responsibility for identifying their purpose.
Photo by Alden Corrigan Media