"Act Without Expectation"
The hardest lessons to learn are when the outcome is less than desirable. How do we learn from these situations? Life is about doing, then learning from what we do. We take the good with the bad and move forward. In golf we must be resilient. Phil Mickelson had the best quote after he won the British Open. Reporters asked him how he bounced back from the US Open. He said "we fail so much in golf, you have to be resilient." Think about that for a moment. Think about all of the golf shots that don't turn out like we want. Think about all the rounds of golf that could have been better. Think about the near misses in tournaments we wish we could have back. It's part of the game, it's part of the process. After a disappointment it's important to look at all the good things we did that day. Then carefully analyze where we can be better. What can we do differently in that situation next time. The best golfers and people that are the most successful in life approach each round and each situation that way.
I've read before that failure is a great teacher. I believe it is, if we ask ourselves the right questions after we have failed and look ourselves in the mirror to see what we have learned. Be committed to not making the same mistakes again in the future. Make better decisions and think more clearly the next time we are in that same position.
Life is an excellent opportunity to learn about ourselves and when we fail it will reveal the most and best time for growth.
Until next time, play the game....enjoy the walk!
Easter is a great time for reflection and a time of renewal. I was thinking this morning about how we can apply the attitude of gratitude to our golf games. It all starts with our attitude. We can control our attitude, it's the number 1 most important thing to expend energy. I talk a lot about acceptance. One beautiful thing acceptance grants us is being grateful. Being grateful for the moment and accepting exactly where we are today. Be grateful that you are on a golf course. Be grateful that you get to play a game you love. Be grateful that you get to challenge yourself and your character. Be grateful for what the game teaches.
The more we cultivate this quality, the more we will stay calm and relaxed when in times of adversity. I challenge you today, on Easter Sunday to renew yourself with an attitude of gratitude. Be kinder to yourself, take a deep breath and be thankful for all that you have and all that you have in front of you. Remember, play the game and enjoy the walk!
I just got off the phone with a player I coach. He is a great kid, smart and from a good family. He soaks up things we talk about like a sponge. Things didn't work out for him like he wanted this year on his college team but he has made great strides. Not necessarily with his scoring average, but with his confidence. It's so important to note that we can't always measure our success or improvement based on what we shoot or whether we make the traveling squad. Golf is about making small steps towards getting better. My dad has one of the best all time sayings, "put quarters in the jar today to take out silver dollars later." It is so true in golf. If we stay the course and work on the small things, the simple things, the things we can control and be the best at doing those things, our confidence will grow and before you know it, you'll be able to withdraw some silver dollars and the scores will happen. I reflect on what I read in Tony Dungy's book, Quiet Strength. He used to say that after a successful season but not quite getting over the hump of the NFC Championship game, there would be murmurs that maybe he needed to change it up and come up with a new or different philosophy. He would always say we just need to be a bit better at the keys he believed in. The key fundamentals that differentiate championship teams from the ones that just fall short. He would say we must tackle better, block better and trust each other a little more. If we do those things just a bit better it will take us where we want to go. When we think about our golf game, it's not always about rebuilding or changing coaches. Let's see if we can make clearer decisions under pressure, be better at dealing with adversity, show more patience and be more carefree. If we can do those things a bit better you will enjoy the game more and the scores will follow. Enjoy the walk...play the game
How badly do you want to succeed at the game of golf? Will you do whatever it takes; eat right, workout, get proper rest, practice hour upon hour? If that is the case then why do I see so many golfers who are hard on themselves on the golf course? Don't we want it bad enough that we realize that it won't help us one iota? Next time you are on the course and you start to beat yourself up over a missed shot, even better yet a good shot that gets a bad break, think about this analogy. I was having dinner with a player I coach and my good buddy at Scholarship for Athletes, Ross Greenstein. He made the best correlation that hit my player like a ton of bricks. If getting plenty of rest is so important to you that you calculate exactly what time you need to wake up and how many hours of sleep you need, how could you be hard on yourself on the golf course? When we are hard on ourself, we waste a lot of energy. We disrupt the flow of the round and good vibes that could be present. Next time you find yourself wanting to be hard on yourself, stop and take a deep breath. Ask yourself, how important is playing great golf. If the answer is extremely important, then you will take a page out of my boy, Ross's book and be as serious about that character trait as you are about working out, practicing and getting great sleep. Until next time, enjoy the walk and play the game!
It's been a while since I've blogged here. I've missed writing down my thoughts. I felt it appropriate to make a post as a continuation to an earlier article I wrote titled "Acceptance is the key to unlocking your true potential." The key is being able to accept the unknown. The truth is if we can accept bogeys we will be able to play this game at an extremely high level. We will make birdies, we will make pars and we will make bogeys. I want you to think about the last time you played 18 holes without a bogey? I bet you can count on one hand how many times you have done just that. So instead of trying to be perfect and not make mistakes let's accept mistakes. Let's just not compound the mistakes. When we hit a bad shot accept a bogey. But grind your tail off to make a par. Hit the smart shot. Give yourself a putt. I promise if you approach your next round of golf with this mindset you will score much better and enjoy the round a whole lot more. Acceptance is the key, so accept imperfect. Enjoy the walk and play the game!
Josh McCumber, professional golfer, coach and consultant has been playing golf almost all of his life. He has been around the game at the highest level, and has learned from the best players and instructors in the game. His uncle, Mark McCumber won 10 times on the PGA TOUR and his cousin Tyler McCumber is currently playing on the PGA TOUR. Josh will share his wisdom, knowledge and proprietary techniques from being out on the PGA TOUR with his uncle, his cousin and from his experience playing the Korn Ferry Tour (formerly Nationwide Tour) and 2 U.S. Opens.