Lessons of GOLF (Growing Old by Living Fully) my father has taught me

Bill’s tip for January: Life’s Scorecard

65My parents are nutty about golf. They’ve spent their lives learning lessons that thousands of courses (and playing their home course thousands of times) have taught them.

Seasoned players understand that the game of golf is mostly mental: Despite botched shots that frequently send even the best players trudging through the rough or sinking into ankle-deep sand traps, what separates a good round from an 18-hole nightmare is the perception one has about their game.

Success can come without good ball placement: In golf, If you address what’s happening and keep your composure in the process, you can turn it around.

All this serves as a writer’s practice swing for what’s truly on my mind.

While it seems only a while ago my dad taught 8 year-old me to swing a club; a bit ago since he proudly watched my brother compete in college; and a moment ago since he and my mom packed their golf bags for Florida and a life of playing year-round, the truth is, this month marks my father’s 80 birthday.

Keeping Score

Dad says he’s excited about “hitting 80” because he has the goal of shooting his age and thinks he can accomplish this if he works on his short gamBB 1-2012e. If the experiences in my dad’s life thus far were jotted down like strokes on a golfer’s scorecard, they would reveal a winning round: In life, if you can address what’s happening and keep your composure in the process, you can turn it around….

My dad is Growing Old by Living Fully -and this is why he is my champion.

Phillip’s tip for January: Post Holiday Emotional Deficit

63Much love and peace to you all – Happy New Year!

Have you come away from this holiday season feeling refreshed and happy from time spent with loved ones or have you returned exhausted and feeling slightly down emotionally?

Many may have a confusing combination of these feelings. I refer to this as Post Holiday Emotional Deficit. Like a car almost out of fuel and left to sputter on fumes with no gas station in sight to replenish it, when we experience “PHED” we need resources – and fast!

Here are a few thoughts to fill your tank in 2012:

  • Unpack ASAP: Yes, you are tired from your journey and unpacking takes effort but un-cluttering your home environment after a holiday can be very helpful to regaining a positive perspective.
  • Take time to reflect: Review your holiday, both “the ups and the downs” of it, then put these thoughts aside – set down the past.
  • Take sanctuary: Prepare a place in your home that provides you a personal and peaceful moment. This could be as simple as an extra pillow on your balcony and a glass of fresh squeezed lemonade. Allow yourself to be in the moment, take a few deep and slow breathes.
  • Nurture your creative side: Emotional blocks can sometimes be released through a dance class, painting or other creative pursuits. Use this as an opportunity not to judge or critique your work, but to expand your sense of what is possible.
  • Eat, Pray, Love: Think about treating yourself to healthy foods and loving relationships. Explore your spiritual life. Faith and Prayer can bring deeper and restful meaning into your life: all significant contributors to the inner peace you are seeking.

Hitting the Reset Button

Consider allowing yourself time to regroup before you take on the world. Reach out to friends that make you laugh. Share your love with others and help out when you can. Life is an amazing and precious gift and deserves to be shared with those around us.

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