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When Your Game Is a Mess

“A constant struggle, a ceaseless battle to bring success from inhospitable surroundings, is the price of all great achievements.” ~ Orison Swett Marden

There are so many lessons to be taken from Lucas Glover’s victory in the U.S. Open.

First, reputations don’t win championships. Good shots do.

Second, you’ve got to be in it to win it. Glover qualified for the tournament only because of a strong performance in Columbus, Ohio, two weeks.

But it’s the third lesson that so many coaches and athletes must remember:

Just because your GAME is a mess doesn’t mean that YOU have to be a mess.

Glover entered Monday’s play tied for the lead, but his game seemed to crumble early in the day. He bogeyed two of the first five holes and three of the first eight. He seemed to be in as much of a meltdown as his playing partner, Ricky Barnes. But even though his game was crumbling, Glover himself was not.

“I held it together and that’s important,” Glover said. “The patience thing, I’ve been preaching all week to myself.”

Sure enough, after a rough beginning, Glover steadied himself and took the prize that was eluding everyone else.

Some people find golf on TV very boring. I believe it’s just the opposite. Golf on TV is like being in a sports psychology lab. It lets us see how champions build their victories. It shows how they handle adversity, how they react to challenges.

Every shot brings a mental challenge: How to you steady yourself after disappointment? How do you relax when your hands are on fire with adrenaline? How do you avoid being overconfident?

Watching Glover brought this reminder: Everyone is going to make mistakes, especially in the U.S. Open. The difference between a champion and others is to how you react to those mistakes.


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