Being Better Than You Were
In the United States we are celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday this week. This is traditionally a time for football, family and gratitude for what we have in our lives. Even though not everyone who visits The Golf Channel website is celebrating this festive time, I want to take this opportunity to extend my wishes for a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday to those who are celebrating.
And now, todays article
Frank, a 3 handicap has the skill to play golf quite well. Hes very talented and very driven. When Frank called, he said, I love golf and Im a fighter and a perfectionist but I think sometimes those things get in my way. Do you enjoy playing the game as much as youd like? I asked. I love to win but I dont necessarily enjoy myself as much as Id like he replied sheepishly. Frank went on to describe how often he competes at his club and that he plays a lot of social golf as well. He added that any time he plays, hes always competing against other people to shoot the lowest score and be heads and shoulders above everyone else. Thats how I keep my edge he says. Even though Frank says he thrives on competition he also describes himself as someone who is losing his grip (grip?the perfect word for the controlled perfectionist!) on having fun and that he feels worn down at times because of it. To Frank, being a competitive perfectionist is how he measures his level of self-improvement.
I helped Frank shift how he defines improvement by asking him to consider:
True self-improvement is not being better than everyone else; it is being better tomorrow than you were today!
Frank thought about it and saw the wisdom in this statement and began adopting it for himself. He began to put more of his attention on improving himself instead of focusing on being perfect, impressing others and basically needing to defeat the world. He now focused on being a better Frank. This change in philosophy brought Frank to focus on himself and his internal condition rather than look externally like he did so often. He not only improved on his own play but he was enjoying himself more as well. He learned to measure his performance on ways HE could be better tomorrow than he was today. This included his mechanical game and his inside game as he saw more clearly that everything does begin from within. Focusing on himself in a more productive way helped Frank reduce his stress, appreciate his own journey more and embrace the process. He shifted from trying to conquer the world to mastering himself and found it to be much more satisfying.
How can you be better tomorrow than you were today?
To your best golf!