golf

Where Mind, Body & Spirit Intersects

I just got back from a yoga retreat in Costa Rica. It was an amazing, inspiring and challenging week of 2-3 yoga classes a day in a beautiful Eco-resort near the beach. My body feels wrung out, but also refreshed with new learning and insights.
 
In high school, I read books on meditation and Buddhism. I didn't yet know what yoga was, but I understood that the stillness of meditation nourished my soul and readied it to meet the challenges of my life on and off the golf course.

I keep coming back to stillness.

I think of the challenging poses on my yoga mat and think that it is not that different from the square, green, turf-like mats at the driving range or at the academy. How you behave on that mat extends beyond the physical space. How you do anything is how you do everything.

There are only a few activities that makes me momentarily disconnect from my internal chatter and exist in the intersection of mind, body and spirit.

Yoga is one: to be submerged in a pose, in my body.

Art is one: to be intensely focused on making something beautiful.   

Love is one: to love what you are doing or another human being is to take care of the need of the spirit.
 
I want my golf game to be like that too, but there are times in the past when that wasn't the case.

My love for golf has made me into who I am today. But playing golf wasn't always self-expression for me. It was an activity that challenged my mind to the point where I couldn't ignore my limiting beliefs and negative self-talk. I had to take action.

These days, golf is more of a walking meditation. It used to be a wrestling match with a mind that wanted to focus more on where NOT to hit it than getting the ball to the hole.

So how do you lessen the chatter?

You listen to it. You give it attention and then you let it go. You humor it; laugh at it. Laughter diminishes those thoughts that don't serve you. You understand it is only mind.. and it doesn't own you. If you listen to it, its barking and demanding voice will turn into a whisper, and your heart will remind you who you really are. Only by listening, can we learn and grow.

This weekend, I will host my very first golf retreat. It is my wish that it will nourish the body, the mind and the spirit. To me, it is magical to come together to learn and inspire one another.

I can't wait.

Golfingly yours,

Rebecka
 

What comes first, confidence or consistency?

A student of mine asked me this question: What comes first, confidence or consistency? Since I know he used to play basketball, I asked him about shooting. I said: "If you are shooting at the basket, is your intention to make it? He said: "Yeah, of course. And when I've made a fair amount of them, I feel confident."
 
If you want to be confident in your golf game, I would recommend that you set an intention when you play and practice. “Where attention goes, energy flows” – and so, whatever you put your intention on, is what you will eventually get. Yes, I know. I know that it is not fool-proof. Life isn't fool-proof either. But if you set an intention, you might surprise yourself on how often you will get it. Intention has a close relative: attention. When you decide to put your attention on the club face for example, you will learn something about it.
 
Here's where I think a lot of us get it wrong: we are not present. We get in our heads. We start to make up stuff. When you play golf, remember this: there are only four things that are real you (the body), the ball, the club and the target.
 
Confidence and consistency are intertwined. You set an intention; you get consistent with that. You gain confidence. You get more consistent.
 
It pulls you back and forth.
 
The bump in the road is a chasm called expectation. Down in the chasm lives a monkey who wants and will eat all your bananas, if you let him. When you start to expect to shoot a certain score or hit a certain way, you are in your head already.
 
Create every shot anew. Be intentional. Go. Learn. Repeat.
 

Enjoy the weekend!
 
Rebecka

You Can Learn Anything

I read Seth Godin's blog and it made me think of the power of commitment. When you make a commitment, it is deeply liberating. You don’t have to think about the steps you need to take to get whatever it is you want; it frees you from the mind that keeps rationalizing why it’s ok to eat the cookie and why it is ok not to go to the gym.
 
Here’s what he wrote:


“We spend way to much time teaching people technique. Teaching people to be good at flute, or C++ or soccer.
 
It’s a waste because the fact is, most people can learn to be good at something, if they only choose to be, if they choose to make the leap and put in the effort and deal with the failure and the frustration and the grind. But most people don’t want to commit until they’ve discovered that they can be good at something. So they say, “teach me, while I stand here on one foot, teach me while I gossip with my friends via text, teach me while I wander off to other things. And sure, if the teaching sticks, then I’ll commit. (....)
 
A committed student with access to resources is almost unstoppable. “
 
I believe you are unstoppable. There are infinite possibilities inside of you for learning, growth and change.
 
The game of golf extends beyond the course.
 
Today’s action step:

  • The next time you play golf, ask yourself: “what am I committed to?”

Please hit reply, and let me know! I’d love to hear from you!
 
Last time I played I committed to being present in my body and with my swing, which allowed me to tune into the target even more and make a few birdies!
 
Enjoy the game! Summer is here…

Keep swingin’,

Rebecka