The Recovering Farmer

Tuesday, March 20, 2018

Quit Trying

Truth be told it is the time of year when I longingly look out the window and wish for spring. The time change came rather unexpectedly but was welcomed nevertheless. The time change, particularly in spring, means a change in perspective, a change of heart, and new things to come. As per usual there began a great debate. Should we change our clocks? Of course we should, and don’t get me going on that. I love the “later” sunsets. It does provide new hope.

As we enter this time of year I seem to be more interested in watching golf on TV. I suspect it is because of my own desire to be out there. It makes me look out at the golf course and dream of swinging the clubs, achieving new heights, of parring the course.

This past Sunday I found myself watching golf AGAIN, even after our kids and grandkids showed up, probably because that is simply who I am. As in a few Sundays of the past, the golfers on the leader board starting disappearing come Sunday. Yes, I know, Tiger is back, but, believe it or not, this has nothing to do with him. Rather it is to do with a comment made by Johnny Miller who, by the way, I do not like as a golf commentator. When mentioning golfers that fall off the leaderboard on Sundays he said they need to “quit trying”.

That made so much sense. “Quit trying”. I have been involved in a few golf tournaments in the past and I always found it interesting that before and after those particular tournaments I could play my usual game, just above or just below my average score. However, come tournament time it seemed I could manufacture the most bizarre shots. It often left me scratching my head, questioning the very essence of the game and my participation in that game.

When I heard Miller’s comment on Sunday a light went on. Let me explain. For the first two days golfers just simply go out and swing the club naturally, using muscle memory. They know which club to use for each shot, what works and what doesn’t. They think of nothing else except what has always worked. Then when they find themselves in contention everything changes. They start trying. They second guess what has always worked. They may become overly cautious. Their body tightens up. Adrenaline output peaks. And things start falling to pieces. Why? Because they started trying.

Some time ago I mentioned to a friend and mentor that I had a particularly challenging situation I needed to deal with in my work and that I needed to make sure I performed at the best of my ability. His response came quickly. He challenged me. He was curious what I did when involved in other situations. Did I not try? Did I not give it my best? He went on to explain that we all are good at what we do. A lot of what we are good at comes naturally and when we suggest we need to make sure we are on our “A” game we set ourselves up for failure.

That makes so much sense. We have so much in us that helps us conquer each day, each situation, each challenge. When something bigger comes along we gear up, we try harder, we second guess what has worked in the past, we become anxious, we change strategies, and we end up blowing it. All of us have that inner spirit that has and will keep pushing us through the “game” of life. Take advantage of your inner abilities, your inner strength, and go out there and play the round of your life. Just quit trying. It will come naturally. Make it a good one.

“What will mess you up most in life is the picture in your head of how it is supposed to be.” Unknown