I believe in golf. I believe that through golf I have learned the fundamental parts of life that will help me become a better person.
Golf has taught me honesty. When I play golf, especially when I keep my own score, there is always an opportunity to cheat. It is easy to pass off a score of 6 as a 5 without anyone noticing. I will never feel as satisfied at the end of a round when I add up the front and back nine and it says that I shot a 75 but I know my true score is an 80. The only person that I am truly cheating when I do that is myself.
Golf has taught me about the smaller aspects of life. I enjoy nothing more in golf then when I pull out my Titleist 907D2 driver and catch the ball in the sweet spot and smash a 300 yard down the middle of the fairway. But as rewarding as those shots are, the ones that matter most are the delicate shots around the green. Shots where if I chip the ball a foot too short, it gets caught up in the rough before the green; but if I hit the chip a foot too far, the ball runs through the green.
Golf has taught me respect. I learned the necessity of respect as soon as I had a birdie put veer off-line after hitting an unfixed ball mark. I learned to repair divots in the fairway after knowing the repercussions of having my ball stuck in a divot where I could not make clean contact and hit the ball as well as I could. What golf also teaches is etiquette. I know how to respect another player by standing out of their way and not talking when they are about to play a shot.
Golf has taught me to move on from the past. I know that when I hit a horrible shot or play lousy on a hole the best way for me to recover my golf game is to figure out what went wrong, fix it, and move on. I identify what went wrong, make the necessary adjustments and then move on and try not to make the same mistakes again.
Golf has taught me humor. It may just be a simple conversation between my friend and me that makes us laugh or it could be a prank that’s funny each time my friend or I pull it on each other. For instance, it is always funny (at least to my friend and me) when we undo the strap on the back of the golf cart that holds on the bag, so the golf bag falls off as soon as one of us steps on the gas and speed away.
I believe that by playing golf, I have been able to improve who I am as a person by utilizing the valuable lessons that golf can teach. Although I am aware of what has golf has taught me when I am on the course, what makes me truly believe in golf is how easy it is to use all that golf has taught me when I am in school, working, and even in life itself.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.