The Sunday Mail
Milton Kamwendo Hunt for Greatness
Perhaps the sport that should be called the beautiful game is not soccer but golf.
Life is a process and a game of taking responsibility. The challenges of golf mirror the challenges of life. Sometimes you find yourself in a difficult place during the game. That does not mean that the game has ended. Facing difficulty does not necessarily mean that you are doing anything wrong.
Take responsibility and work out your situation. Being in a rough spot for a season does not mean you will die there. As the year draws to a close determine to be a fighter. The new year is an opportunity for you to re-launch your life. It is an opportunity to charge forward. It is a space to renew your energy and move forward.
Wherever you find yourself today is likely not the end of your road. There is a path around your obstacle. There is space above it and there is room underneath it. No situation is without a solution and no difficulty will last forever.
Rise to your greatness and challenge yourself to be better in the new year. Leave negativity this side of the year. Leave cynicism behind you. Leave hopelessness aside. Charge forward. Resolve to move forward. First the decision, then the action. Do not give up and stop punching.
Finding yourself in the woods of life does not mean you should give up. Do not allow other people’s negativity to be your inheritance. Do not let other people’s doubts become yours. Be bold, be courageous, be daring and challenge your limitation and what you have come to accept as your lot in life.
Do not let the past hold you back or tempt you to be over-confident. The fact that you had a good game last time does not mean you should lose your concentration today. The good things that you have been doing, build on them. The disciplines that you have mastered strengthen them.
The things that you do well, sharpen them and become a grand master. Every day is different but it is always an opportunity to do and give your best. Give your best because that is all that you can give. Play your best with the instruments that you have.
It is only a bad golfer who blames his club and his green. Determine to win in the circumstances you find yourself in. Determine to play with what you have. Stop looking out there for solutions that you are standing on. Be the best of whatever you are. Douglas Mulloch was inspired when he wrote the following poem that applies to the game of life and the game of golf:
“ If you can’t be a pine on the top of the hill
Be a scrub in the valley — but be
The best little scrub by the side of the rill;
Be a bush if you can’t be a tree.
If you can’t be a bush be a bit of the grass,
And some highway some happier make;
If you can’t be a muskie then just be a bass-
But the liveliest bass in the lake!
We can’t all be captains, we’ve got to be crew,
There’s something for all of us here.
There’s big work to do and there’s lesser to do,
And the task we must do is the near.
If you can’t be a highway then just be a trail,
If you can’t be the sun be a star;
It isn’t by size that you win or you fail-
Be the best of whatever you are!”
To play golf you need three types of clubs, namely driver, iron and putter. Drivers are clubs that are “for giving” momentum to the ball. How you hit the ball determines its momentum and direction. The ball is always innocent there is no need to curse it. Hit at your goals with focus and passion. You cannot blame the goals for being too big or too small because you are the one who set them.
Live life like you mean to live it. There are no half-hearted champions. The driver club moves the ball a long distance from the tee box down the range. Once you tee-off, the irons are the golfer’s tool box. The irons are numbered metal clubs that player options for navigating the ball around the field.
Wherever the ball falls you need to take responsibility for your shot and work your ball forward. Keep moving the ball forward. No challenging situation is a terminal point and never give up so soon.
Move through the various places, and spaces, and never lose your aim. Missing the mark does not mean you have missed the game. Stop fretting about the poor shots you took in the past, not focus on this shot — this moment. Keep playing and do not lose heart.
To finally get the ball into the cup you need a special type of club called a putter. The putter is a special club that is used on the putting green. This is a special compacted area with special grass around the hole area. The putter is usually a pride club for any golfer.
Always remember that in life and in golf — it is not so much the brand you are using but the person holding the club that finally determines the score. Stop complaining about conditions and start playing. You are the silver bullet and the difference maker. You are the protagonist.
In golf, as in life, you do not just play one hole and win. You play the course. You have to keep your focus and work through the various holes. Some are long and others are short holes. Some are challenging and others are easy holes. So it is with your goals. Some are hard and others are easy to take. Keep shooting and focusing. Work your way through to your greatness.
How would this be related to coming to the end of the year. Coming to the end of the year is like putting. You need special skills and concentration to ensure that you reach the cup. As you put your way to the end of the year just remember to focus on the critical few things that really matter.
The critical few
It is not just quantity and the multiplicity of things to do that matters. What is important is to be clear about the critical few. What you focus on determines what you get.
First is the critical few people. Who are the critical few people that inspired you, inspire you and challenge you? Focus on developing this special relationship. Reflect about the critical people that you can positively influence and help in their growth path.
You will not be a blessing to everyone but there are people that know you are God’s gift to them. Understand the critical few people that help you to be effective and encourage them. What changes do you need to make in your relationships?
Second are the critical few goals. You can have as many items in your dream-list or bucket-list. However, you cannot effectively focus on a thousand issues. Focus on the critical few goals that move the needle forward. What goals if you pursued would have the greatest impact in your life?
Unless you focus your life on what matters you will dissipate a lot of energy. Things that matter most must never be at the mercy of things that matter least.
Focus on a few critical goals. It is better to have one goal that you purse until it is begging for mercy than to have many goals that you only talk about but never do anything about. Talking is not executing. Dreaming is not working. Saying too much is not a sign of having results. Focus on what matters and you will ultimately matter yourself.
Third is the critical few changes that you need to make. Any time you set out to change everything you are likely end up where you began — having changed nothing.
To start any change process focus on the critical few things that you need to change or improve. It is better to focus on one element, you thing and one issue that you work through. Breakthrough is near, just focus. Do not give up because it is heard. Transformation is a process and not an event. Work through towards your breakthrough.
Identify a few critical changes than you need to make. Choose one of two and commit to working on these until your reach mastery.
2017 was a year of surprises and phenomenal changes. What a year to have lived through. I wish you a great 2018. I will be working on my game of golf that seems to have been abandoned for too long. If you meet my wife, please ask her where she last saw my golf clubs.
Committed to your greatness.
Milton Kamwendo is a leading international transformational and motivational speaker, author and coach. He is a cutting strategy, innovation, team-building and leadership facilitator. His life purpose is to inspire greatness. He can be reached at: [email protected] and Twitter: @MiltonKamwendo or WhatsApp at: 0772422634.