“Address the ball…” Par 3

In the context of the game of golf the descriptor “address the ball”—according to Random House—means: “to take a stance and place the head of club behind the golf ball preparatory to hitting it.” Simple as it seems, without this step, no golf can be played.  Simple? Perhaps.  Necessary?  Absolutely.

Montreal Championship - Round Two

Comparable to the moment a Maestro takes his place in front of a Symphony Orchestra, steps to his stand and raises his baton,  it  introduces, or perhaps better said, it is the doorway leading to the shot which will follow. It is the final dress rehearsal before thoughts are transmitted to action and the swing sequence starts. For me, the  player, it might seem to be just a few fleeting Nano-seconds of trying to inject my final touches which could lead to perfection, while to those observers around it me could seem as endlessly long as the Baton Death March.  It’s all a matter of perspective.

In my last blog (5 Sep.) I stated: “Part of what makes the game of golf so enjoyable to me is it’s interactive nature, requiring physical skill and critical thinking applied to a landscape of ever-changing characteristics and instant rewards—either positive or negative. Each shot is a new riddle to solve—in essence, a game within a game.”

As a result of coming to grips with the reality that “each shot is a new riddle to solve” it has become axiomatic, to me, that each situation demands that I respect it for its uniqueness—no “been there done that nonsense”—I would rather over prepare and be right than under prepare and be wrong.

Having said all that—SO WHAT?

I have never—NEVER seen a professional golfer whose income depends on his or her skills as a golfer  not incorporate a short pause at address before he or she swings, to be sure everything is “in sync” before pulling the trigger on their shot.

I am not a professional golfer but I am a “professional” PERSON.  But— I am not proud of this—at times in my life, when I am overstressed, my approach to life situations is “ready, shoot, aim when it needs to be, “ready aim shoot” I have found that installing a little time to address/aim in each situation before I pull the trigger on my actions is a good thing.

I love what Steven Covey, author of the book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People, had to say on this subject:

“Between stimulus and response we have the opportunity to choose—that’s what separates us from the animals.”

I choose to think of that time between stimulus and response as “Address” time.

Is address time a factor in your thinking when you are confronted with stimuli to respond to?

And what do you do in those address moments between stimulus and response?

I’ve found prayer works very nicely there.  How about you?

4 responses to this post.

  1. Well, when you’re overstressed, your approach to life situations may be “ready aim shoot.” My problem has too often been “shoot, ready, aim” instead of “ready aim shoot.” The importance of “address the ball” is like “Be still and know that I am God.” Thanks for your reminder, Larry!

    Reply

  2. I love the thought. It fits perfectly. Thanks John

    Reply

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