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Rally Resolutions?

Set positive goals for 2014 and share your New Year's Resolutions with us! By Brenna Fender

As 2014 approaches, millions of people will be making New Year's resolutions. Only a fraction of those will be about dog sports, but I bet some of you will be sitting down to write out some Rally resolutions for the new year. If you aren't, perhaps you should! 

New Year's resolutions can serve as goals for your upcoming training and competition year. January is a good time for reevaluation of your training program. 

A training session without a predetermined plan is often inefficient. A rally career without precise goals may also flounder. Broad aspirations for earning placements, titles, and championships are fine, but often success comes from focusing on the specific steps you need to reach those big goals. What are the skills you and your dog must obtain to complete each step?  

A written list of your goals will help you stay organized during 2014. Plus, research shows that the subconscious mind often believes things said aloud as fact. Instead of talking yourself into failure, state your goals positively and read them out loud for the greatest chance of success. 

Review your goals regularly. Display your goals in places that you will frequently see them, like on your refrigerator or your bathroom mirror. 

As the year progresses, focus on your successes, not your failures. Errors or interruptions as you move forward to reach your goals can be dealt with by revamping your training plans, but don't dwell on the mistakes. Replay successful moments in your head to boost your confidence.

What are your rally resolutions? What are your rally-related goals for 2014? Share them with me, along with your name, your dog's name, age, and breed, and your location and they might appear in a future article on! Email your resolutions to

Happy New Year!

Brenna Fender is the editor of, among other things. Brenna owns a Whippet, Papillon, Beagle, and a young Border Collie, as well as other furry and not-so-furry creatures. She also has two children who are mostly on the non-furry side. Brenna can be reached at 


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