INNISBROOK, Fla., April 26, 2011 — For leisure golfers, it’s easy to get caught up in the heat of competition. However, players need to remember that, no matter how you play, the glass can always be half full at the end of the day.
Recently, I ran a Ryder Cup format day of golf with 24 of our members. Dividing them into two teams, I tried to match players as evenly as possible. Each team had twosomes competing head-to-head, using the same point system as the Ryder Cup.
The golfers played the first nine holes in an alternate shot format, and the second nine holes using first best ball format, with full handicap. After completion of the round, the teams were re-aligned and finished out with a final nine holes in a scramble format.
The match came down to a one-point difference, which couldn’t have been any closer. But, before the last nine holes started, two players in particular were very unhappy with my pairings, saying how unfair they were, along with a slew of other complaints. Needless to say, they lost on the first 18 holes, as did some other players.
If they had won, would the complaints have been the same? This made me realize that golfers who lose or play poorly are usually unhappy as a result. Case in point: the miserable golfers left immediately, and didn’t stay for the prizes or my post-play pep talk.
Golfers that play well or win are happy. It’s pretty cut and dry. Does that mean you have a 50/50 chance of being happy after playing a round of golf? Or can you be happy, no matter how you played?
I made this speech to the ladies after the round, reminding them that they were fortunate enough to play 27 holes on a Thursday with friends and family, to have drinks and great food, and to have their health while breathing fresh air on a beautiful golf course. No matter what the outcome of the round, the glass is always half full, if not completely full, whenever you go out to play golf.
That’s the nature of a leisure sport. If you learn to enjoy your leisure golf time, not only will you play better, you will also be a more pleasurable person to be around. And a fun player is a player who has more buddies to golf with, which means more time to spend perfecting your game. It’s a self-rewarding cycle that can leave you with a full glass every time.
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