In the Present. I still work with college golfers as a sport psychologist. Most of my work with young golfers matches the standard concern of most sport psychologists. We try to find the words and examples that help each individual find a way to play one shot at a time.
Teaching that to young people raised in Western Cultures is not easy. When they play, too often they are living in the past or anxious about the future.
I do not think it is an accident that Asian women are dominating women’s golf. Eastern cultures place a greater emphasis on living in the present. Western cultures place a stronger focus on the past and the future.
A missed short putt or an errant drive are difficult memories for a young person to put behind them. Thinking about winning, losing or just beating friends creates anxiety. They have to work very hard to develop individual ways to just play the shot in front of them. Very few succeed at the task.
Living Today. The 2023 football season is the first time in my life I have been more excited about the football team at my school than the basketball program. My high school and other schools I attended or worked for did not have strong football programs.
For many years, my current school, South Alabama, did not even have a football program. A University not having football in the state of Alabama was like a University in Indiana not having a basketball program. Our student body has grown and benefited from a football program.
This year my expectations were high for our program especially after beating Oklahoma State in our second game. We have had a few glitches but this last week we won and should become bowl eligible.
Jeny and I were at the game last week. In addition to the victory, a highlight occurred during a time-out. Veterans Day was being celebrated and our good friend Chester Feagin was honored. He is a 98-year-old WWII veteran. I eat lunch with him on Fridays.
The next day he was honored at our church. He is an amazing man. He still prepares taxes and performs other accounting activities. He is a man of deep and abiding faith. He shared the most important day of his life was the day long ago when he gave his life to God.
He also shared several amazing war stories. He told of being in the Navy and working on an ammo ship. That is frightening enough, but then he told of watching his sister ammo ship being blown up by the Japanese. He told of being anchored off Iwo Jima and the privilege of getting to see the famous flag raising.
Our pastor asked him, “What is your favorite day?” He replied “today. You can not relive the past. You are not promised tomorrow. Enjoy every day as special.”
When I heard that, I thought to myself — that is good advice for golfers and good advice for all of us.
Humility. The Euclid is a European space telescope. Last week the Euclid began sending pictures. Just as with the Hubble telescope and the Webb telescope, the pictures were awesome.
Seeing the vastness of space always humbles me. Today it also makes me appreciate the privilege of another day of life. I am reminded to be a good steward over the time and resources with which I have been blessed.
I misunderstood the headline until I realized 6 years off your age is not 6 years off of your life!