Raising Your Own Bar

By David BreslowJanuary 3, 2006, 5:00 pm
Everybody has one. Its effect on us can be subtle to the point that we are not even aware of it. Everybodys is different and it can change from situation to situation! What is it? Its called a comfort zone.
 
Whenever we take on a new project, try something new, attempt to set new goals or standards for ourselves we will, at some point, come face to face with our comfort zone. Its not a matter of if it will happen its a matter of when it will happen.
 
PERFORMANCE COMFORT ZONES
 
I work with professionals in sports and business and at every level comfort zones come into play. For example, when I ask a golfer what they shoot they might answer, I shoot in the mid 80s or mid 70s. This is a subtle statement of their comfort zone. A comfort zone sets us up to perform within its limitations and acts as a magnet pulling us in that direction. For example, around the 14th hole a golfer may notice they are shooting their all-time best score. When they become aware of this their performance begins to drift back to the point where their final score is somewhere around their usual score.
 
In sports and business, teams are affected by comfort zones as well. If the team is used to performing poorly their overall comfort zones will create hidden obstacles that cause them to continue their poor performance. People who excel have a higher comfort zone than people and teams who dont. They expect to perform well while those with lower comfort zones tend to have lower expectations. The irony is it often has very little to do with talent or skill. This is the power an established comfort zone can have on us. It affects performance in sports, business and life!
 
Are you comfortable earning the money you say you want? Are you comfortable reaching your personal or professional goals? As you know, New Years goals are notorious for being set and not pursued. In my opinion, they are not met because although they look good on paper there is something in the goal or dream that is outside our comfort zones so we find ways to sabotage ourselves instead.
 
ACTIONS DO SPEAK LOUDER THAN WORDS
 
Our actions, not our words reveal our comfort zones. A limiting comfort zone can prevent us from taking the required action we need to meet our dreams. In my coaching/speaking programs I ask people to focus on actions and not words as being a reflection of the truth. Words, stories or excuses (blaming others, etc.) can create a smoke screen but actions (or inactions) are clear indicators of our comfort zones and much easier to identify. When we are honest about our own comfort zones we can rapidly uncover the hidden beliefs, assumptions and interpretations that cause us to be stuck and make faster shifts toward what we want.
 
HOW COMFORT ZONES ARE FORMED
 
A comfort zone is formed by experience which over time and repetition turns into a belief. Many of us are very good at proving our comfort zones are real by recreating the limiting experiences over and over again. Each time we do, we reinforce the belief sending subtle messages to ourselves such as, I knew this would happen or I knew Id only get this far. Over time our comfort zones become our unspoken expectations (this is where I always wind up!). A comfort zone is a state of mind and usually has little to do with your actual talent or skill. Its easy to prove them by using self-fulfilling prophecy (I knew it!) but why not break them instead?
 
BREAKING COMFORT ZONES
 
There are many great ways to help break comfort zones and in this short article I will offer just a few that Ive used with sports and business clients.
 
1. Be honest with yourself. This is the simplest and yet can be the most challenging step to take. The truth is; if you wont be honest about them it is very difficult to move past them. Be honest. If you have a fear or limiting belief about yourself or a task/situation, put it out there for yourself. There is nothing wrong with it; its just a belief and is not a true reflection of your worth, talent or skill.
 
2. Dont assume youre right! Dont assume just because youve proven your comfort zone by repeating it so often in the past that it has anything to do with today. It doesnt! Its only a memory based on past experience (I always do this!) and is no reflection on your capabilities right now! Take one small action step right now to prove this to yourself.
 
3. Start Small....All comfort zones can be broken and expanded. Pick ONE area and create a small but steady process that allows you to bust through it. For example, if you want to improve your decision making skills take small strides each day that will break that comfort zone. Decide to make 2 decisions each day this week and your comfort level will grow within a short period of time! If you want to increase your sales but have avoided the large accounts, call on 1 large account per day for the next 2 weeks with no concern about outcomes. Just take the action and your comfort level will expand, so will your list, your confidence and your sales!
 
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  • David Breslow Article Archive
     
    Copyright 2006 David Breslow is a Speaker/Facilitator/Performance Coach who works with Athletes (PGA/LPGA) and businesses to help people perform at the top of their game. His approach is not business as usual and creates faster shifts in how people think, feel and perform every day. David has appeared on The Golf Channel, ESPN radio and has spoken to corporations across the country. To reach David call: 847.681.1698 or email: David@theflowzone.net or visit the web: www.theflowzone.net.
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    Rahm manages frustration, two back at CareerBuilder

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 1:21 am

    Jon Rahm managed the winds and his frustrations Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge to give himself a chance to win his fourth worldwide title in the last year.

    Rahm’s 2-under-par 70 on the PGA West Stadium Course left him two shots off the lead going into the final round.

    “I wasn’t really dealing with the wind that much,” Rahm said of his frustrations. “I was dealing with not being as fluid as I was the last two days.”


    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos


    The world’s No. 3 ranked player opened with a 62 at La Quinta Country Club on Thursday and followed it up with a 67 on Friday at PGA West. He made six birdies and four bogeys on the Stadium Course on Saturday.

    “The first day, everything was outstanding,” Rahm said. “Yesterday, my driver was a little shaky but my irons shots were perfect. Today, my driver was shaky and my irons shots were shaky. On a course like this, it’s punishing, but luckily on the holes where I found the fairway I was able to make birdies.”

    Rahm is projected to move to No. 2 in the world rankings with a finish of sixth or better on Sunday.

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    Cook leads by one entering final round at CareerBuilder

    By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 12:51 am

    LA QUINTA, Calif. – Austin Cook hit a hybrid into the fairway bunker on the par-4 18th on a breezy Saturday afternoon at La Quinta Country Club, then chunked a wedge and raced a chip 20 feet past the hole.

    Kip Henley, the longtime PGA Tour caddie who guided Cook to a breakthrough victory at Sea Island in November, stepped in to give the 26-year-old former Arkansas star a quick pep talk.

    ''Kip said, 'Let's finish this like we did on the first day at the Nicklaus Course.' We made a big par putt on 18 there and he said, 'Let's just do the same thing. Let's get this line right and if you get the line right it's going in.'''

    It did, giving Cook an 8-under 64 and a one-stroke lead in the CareerBuilder Challenge going into the final round on the Stadium Course at PGA West. Fellow former Razorback Andrew Landry and Martin Piller were tied for second, and Jon Rahm and Scott Piercy were a another stroke back after a tricky day in wind that didn't get close to the predicted gusts of 40 mph.


    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos


    ''I know that I wouldn't have wanted to play the Stadium today,'' Cook said. ''I think we got a great draw with the courses that we got to play on the days that we got to play them.''

    Cook played the final six holes on the front nine in 6 under with an eagle and four birdies.

    ''Starting on my fourth hole, I was able to make a birdie and kind of get the ball rolling and it never really stopped rolling,'' Cook said. ''Kip and I were doing really good at seeing the line on the greens.''

    After a bogey on 10, he birdied 11, 12 and 15 and parred the final three to get to 19-under 197.

    ''I think that tonight the nerves, the butterflies, all that will kind of be a little less,'' Cook said. ''I've been in the situation before and I was able to finish the job on Sunday. I think it would be a little different if I didn't play like I did on Sunday at Sea Island.''

    He's making his first start in the event.

    ''I came in from Hawaii on Monday, so I only had two days to prepare for three courses,'' Cook said.

    Landry, the second-round leader, had a 70 at the Stadium. Piller, the husband of LPGA tour player Gerina Piller, shot a 67 at La Quinta. Winless on the PGA Tour, they will join Cook in the final threesome.

    ''Piller's a good guy and we have played a lot together and same with Cookie,'' said Landry, the only player without a bogey after 54 holes. ''Hope the Hogs are going to come out on top.''

    Rahm had a 70 at the Stadium to reach 17 under. The third-ranked Rahm beat up the par 5s again, but had four bogeys – three on par 3s. He has played the 12 par 5s in 13 under with an eagle and 11 birdies.

    ''A little bit of a survival day,'' Rahm said.

    The wind was more of a factor on the more exposed and tighter Stadium Course.

    ''The course is firming up,'' Rahm said. ''I know if we have similar wind to today, if we shoot something under par, you'll be way up there contesting it over the last few holes.''

    Piercy had a 66 at the Stadium.

    ''I controlled my ball really well today,'' he said.

    Adam Hadwin had a 67 at La Quinta a year after shooting a third-round 59 on the course. The Canadian was 16 under along with Grayson Murray and Brandon Harkins. Murray had a 67 on the Nicklaus Course, and Harkins shot 68 at the Stadium.

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut in his first tournament of the year for the second time in his career, shooting a 74 on the Stadium to finish at 4 under – four strokes from a Sunday tee time. The 47-year-old Hall of Famer was playing for the first time since late October. He also missed the cut in the Phoenix Open in his 2009 opener.

    Charlie Reiter, the Palm Desert High School senior playing on the first sponsor exemption the event has given to an amateur, also missed the cut. He had three early straight double bogeys in a 77 on the Stadium that left him 1 over.

    John Daly had an 80 at La Quinta. He opened with a triple bogey and had six bogeys – four in a row to start his second nine - and only one birdie. The 51-year-old Daly opened with a 69 on the Nicklaus layout and had a 71 on Friday at the Stadium.

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    Phil misses CareerBuilder cut for first time in 24 years

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 12:48 am

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge. It’s a rare occurrence in his Hall of Fame career.

    He has played the event 15 times, going back to when it was known as the Bob Hope Classic. He has won it twice.

    How rare is his missing the cut there?

    The last time he did so, there was no such thing as a DVD, Wi-Fi, iPods, Xbox, DVR capability or YouTube.


    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos


    The PGA Tour’s Jon Rahm didn’t exist, either.

    The last time Mickelson missed a cut in this event was 1994, nine months before Rahm was born.

    Mickelson struggled to a 2-over-par 74 in the heavy winds Saturday on the PGA West Stadium Course, missing the 54-hole cut by four shots. He hit just four of 14 fairways, just nine of 18 greens. He took a double bogey at the 15th after requiring two shots to escape the steep-walled bunker on the left side of the green.

    Mickelson won’t have to wait long to try to get back in the hunt. He’s scheduled to play the Farmers Insurance Open next week at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, Calif.

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    Defending champ Gana co-leads Latin America Amateur

    By Randall MellJanuary 20, 2018, 11:20 pm

    Toto Gana moved into early position to try to win a return trip to the Masters Saturday by grabbing a share of the first-round lead at the Latin America Amateur Championship.

    The defending champ posted a 3-under-par 68 at Prince of Wales Country Club in his native Chile, equaling the rounds of Argentina’s Mark Montenegro and Colombia’s Pablo Torres.

    They are one shot ahead of Mexico’s Alvaro Ortiz and Mario Carmona, Argentina’s Horacio Carbonetti and Jaime Lopez Rivarola and the Dominican Republic’s Rhadames Pena.

    It’s a bunched leaderboard, with 19 players within three shots of each at the top of the board in the 72-hole event.

    “I think I have my game under control,” said Gana, 20, a freshman at Lynn University. “I hit the ball very well, and I also putted very well. So, I am confident about tomorrow.”

    The LAAC’s champion will get more than a Masters invitation. He also will be exempt into the The Amateur, the U.S. Amateur and any other USGA event he is eligible to play this year. The champion and players who finish runner-up are also exempt into the final stages of qualifying for The Open and the U.S. Open.

    The LAAC was founded by the Masters, the R&A and the USGA, with the purpose of further developing amateur golf in South America, Central America, Mexico and the Caribbean.