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Challenging Yourself In and Out of the Ring

”The most rewarding things you do in life are often the ones that look like they cannot be done.” – Arnold Palmer

Lately I have been noticing that life has thrown some challenging situations my way, not only in the dog world, but in real life as well.

At first I asked myself, “Why is this happening to me?” But soon I began to realize that sometimes what’s happening in our lives is exactly what’s needed most – and this goes for me too.

As you probably know by now, I enjoy taking photos. A lot of the pictures I take at dog shows are mainly from conformation and the Junior Showmanship rings. But I also enjoy shooting performance-type photos, although I rarely get the chance to do so. When I do get the chance, however, I really have to challenge myself to get that picture perfect shot.

Challenging yourself in or out of the ring can have many positive effects, even if the road getting there is a little bumpy.

Of course, we all experience some element of fear in these types of challenging situations, but it’s important to really look at the big picture. (Pardon the pun!)

 

On the subject of being overwhelmed by fear, I had the chance to go snowboarding last week with my brother, Kyle, who led me onto a trail labeled “Most Difficult.” I asked him if we were really about to head into what seemed like an impossible feat for me. He made a good point by saying, “You will thank me later.”

He was absolutely right. After making it through this area and back onto a trail, I felt happy about what I’d accomplished. If anything, the experience proved to me that challenging myself is a good thing!

I urge you to push yourself to learn new things. It’s important to remember to think outside the box in order to improve at any craft. Stretch your boundaries, and you’ll enhance your sense of accomplishment. You might also find that you’ll stay excited about the things you do, in and out of the ring.

Just don’t forget that Dogs Freakin’ Rule.

Written by

Kayla Bertagnolli is a 23-year-old from Ogden, UT, who's been involved in the dog show world her whole life. A former junior handler who learned about breeding Beagles from her mother Leah, she assisted several professional handlers and is currently working to become a Junior Showmanship judge. Kayla is passionate about photography and writes the twice-weekly blog, DFR. She plans to continue breeding and showing, and expects to stay involved in dogs "for life!"