Fore!

Every year my family travels to Colorado for a summer vacation and the trips usually involve my husband and I playing several rounds of golf during our stay. We play at various locations, with various people, sometimes it is just the two of us, but we often branch out and play with the locals. As we played this year I began to think about the similarities there are between a golf game and the way we live our lives:

  • You need a strong desire
  • Recognize and learn from your mistakes
  • Don’t cut the corners even if
  • Limit the negative mental chatter
  • Get a good teacher

First, you have to have a desire for the game of golf every time you go out to play, just like you do for life. If you do not have a desire to play or learn golf, you will be disappointed and most likely quite. It requires a yearning to return and try try again! The majority of us wake up to the same routine everyday, and if we do not have a desire to learn and do good, we will be disappointed and give up. A desire and longing for something larger than ourselves and to see growth in an area of our life. We must seek out opportunities daily to grow our spiritual relationship with God- or we will give up.

Much like golf, moving through life requires us to be consistent, but yet always changing and learning from our mistakes. Bend your knees, keep your head down, and follow through, these are all things most golfers hear. But how often do we make a mistake, own it, recognize it, and then change our approach or stance? If we are being honest, I think most of us move through the first two phases without a glance, but we don’t follow through on the third or fourth phase. The last two phases, recognition and change, are sometimes the hardest skills to learn. Sometimes this requires us to physically move and do something different

Have you ever played with someone who expects the rules to be bent just a little in their favor to make it an easy win? We can either choose to play by the rules or cheat a little to obtain the short-lived glory of success. What do you gain from bending the rules and cutting the corners- a good score card for the day? Then what happens when you play the next time? Failure and frustration because you learned nothing from the previous experience. You have nothing new to apply to your life. We then start making excuses for why we are cutting the corners, validating our actions, and we end up somewhere we never thought we would be.

As you transition to play the back nine, you have to limit your mental chatter from the previous nine holes. Many pro golfers invest heavily in Sports Psychologists to help improve their performance and thoughts during a game. Negative mental chatter and talk during a golf game can ruin it all and bring you down faster than you realize. How often do we find negative mental chatter clouding our thoughts? Our culture is such a victim of this negative chatter. With depression and suicide on the rise among all ages, we have to recognize if this is something that seems “normal” in our life. Negative mental chatter can lead to a fundamental decline in how we view ourselves and our worth, which ultimately affects how we live out our life, how we interact with others, and our attitude.

The last similarity between the game of golf and the way we live is our need for a good teacher. Get a good teacher who understands the game of golf and you personally- and you are set! Good teachers can give you one piece of advice that can change your game and your life forever. They will keep you coming back for more and keep you so interested that you learn to love and appreciate life (or golf) in a whole new way!

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