Last week was a very significant week for me because as many of you who read this would know, I exposed my own personal goals and ambitions to my group of friends on Facebook. Prior to this there was only a select few people who knew what I was trying to do. “Select” in that they were my inner most circle and the people who I needed to support me in the immediate short term and who I knew were positive in their view of what I wanted to do and optimistic about my ability to succeed.
All that changed last week, well it did in my mind anyway. I wrote a post on Facebook, explaining that I was committing myself to my dream of playing professional golf on one of the world’s major tours. For me this was a little risky as I left myself open to criticism, ridicule and dismissal. Feeling this trepidation was a misjudgement on my behalf as in the end I’ve received nothing but positive support and encouragement from everyone who has taken the time to contact me through the social media forums and emails and messages etc. So, to all my friends and family, sorry for underestimating you all. You don’t know how much your support means to me.
One of the outcomes of last week is that my levels of accountability are now significantly higher than they were from before the post. I’ve really put myself out there and whilst there is the euphoria of receiving all the encouragement and positive reinforcement, that dies down pretty quickly. I’m then left with the hard work and struggle that I need to get through in order to achieve my goal. Before going “public” with my dreams, the only person I was really accountable to was myself and whilst that’s still my strongest responsibility, I am really motivated by being accountable to all of you who have supported me so unreservedly. I know in the future that when I have a conversation with any of my friends and family that I talk to sporadically due to the constraints of time zone and distance, that one of the first questions will be: “How’s the golf going?”. I want to have a really good answer for you on that and that means that I need to make sure I’m doing everything I can possibly do to make my dreams a reality. I want for my friends and family to be waking up in the morning in Australia and to be excited to check the golf results overnight on their phones to see how I’m going in whatever tournament I’m playing in that week.
Whilst these new levels of accountability may be a little daunting, they are also motivating. When I know I need to do a workout and I’m really not feeling it, then I can just think of Derek Lennon’s inspirational comments on my post, or Richard Hyland’s bets he’s going to place on me or my parents’ public proclamation of their pride in me to get my butt off the couch and go and do something to help me improve. The other really noticeable motivation is my 15yo daughter telling me that I’m her inspiration………WOW!! Didn’t that just blow me away and there’s no way you can sit on the couch after that!!!
As a footnote to this blog, and as I typed the date, I realised it was the day of my Opa’s birth. He would have been 111 years old. It made me realise that what he did involved more courage than what I’m doing at a fairly similar age and I can draw strength from that. In 1951, at the age of 45, he packed up his family and moved from Holland to Australia. He walked away from his business which had sustained him and his wife (and my Mum and Uncle) throughout and after the dark war years. He knew full well he was giving up regular contact with his friends and family to secure a better life for himself and his family than what he envisioned in a post war ravaged Europe. With little more than the clothes on their back after they paid their own fares to get to Australia, they started forging a new life without knowledge of the language or the culture. As the years have testified their decision was not only courageous it was absolutely successful. As well as further accountability to honour the opportunities this brave decision provided me, I also have a rediscovered sense of inspiration.