Published on ADDitudeMag.com

Keep Your Eye on the Ball

We, who fight the good fight, consider it a victory when we stay on point.

by Bill Mehlman


There's concentration and there's concentration. We, who fight the good fight, daily, hourly, minute by minute, consider it a victory when we stay on point, forcing ourselves to work methodically. And we're right. We recognize that we have a problem, and that in all probability it's a lifelong problem.

By way of perspective, and, as I hope should be obvious, not to be disparaging in any way (I like to work out my self-loathing in private) I thought I'd offer an example of hyperconcentration. I can't document the story, but it rings true.

Jack Nicklauswas on the eighteenth green of a big tournament, needing to sink a longish putt for a winning birdie. He read the green, brushed a few stray blades of grass out of the path of his putt and took his stance. The Golden Bear took a practice stroke, moved up to his ball, settled his feet and took a deep breath.

Just as he was about to bring start his backswing, a bee landed on the shaft of his putter and began to mosey up toward Jack's hands. So he screamed and threw the club into the lake... Not really. Actually, he kept his eyes on the ball, drew the putter back smoothly and finished his stroke. The ball sped across the green, following the path Jack had envisaged as though he'd dug a little trench for it.

Only as the ball made one last turn, and tipped into the hole, did Jack look down and brush the bumblebee away.

Do the best you can. Keep your goals foremost in your mind. You might never be able to sink a 40' putt, but you'll be a happier and more successful person in your own arena, and isn't that what it's all about?


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Source: Keep Your Eye on the Ball