These past couple weeks have flew by for me at school and the time goes by so quickly that it is hard to reflect on what has happened and what I have learned to become a better version of myself. Through the start of my senior year, I would say disappointment comes to mind when it comes to results, however, when it comes to genuine self reflection and becoming a better golfer and stronger man, I would say I am satisfied and proud of myself.
I have realized that when you grow up an anxious person and you have been through enough self-inflicted trauma, I will never truly have that side of myself "figured out." I raise this point because I told many people I am close to that it feels nice to be past that anxious side, I am never going back and many other statements that made it seem like I had my anxiety stashed away for good. The reality of the situation is that it will never leave me and that is something that I have come face to face with through a particularly hard fought tournament both physically with a sore neck, and mentally with a wall of anxiety coming about the morning of the first round and not leaving my side until the very end of the event. I realized after taking a few days to decompress and access the situation, that the root cause of this "anxiety attack," for lack of better words, is not only that I put immense pressure on myself to perform that had not been there in previous weeks, it is the fact that I could not detach myself from the physical experience of being excited and get into the realm of 'letting it be,' where I had gotten myself to in the experiences leading up to the tournament.
I felt a great deal mental worthlessness and physical pain not only from disappointment in myself but also from my neck legitimately hurting me. I was humbled through the realization that it does not matter that I worked hard and I deserve to play well in my mind. The thing that truly matters is that I get to travel the country and grow my game as preparation for the professional level I will be at not too far down the road. I felt that I should not be feeling these feelings of sadness and desperation. If I were to have let it be in the first place and truly been okay with whatever experience occurs prior to, during and after each round, versus feeling that I need to react in a certain way and playing my best is the only option. I never even gave myself a chance versus the previous two events I simply tried to stay as calm as I could and feel every emotion fully, then let it pass.
I am most at peace, in bliss, content, or whatever label you want to give to being okay with what is going on around me when I truly just accept the situation for what it is no matter how hard that is to swallow at the time. I will get pissed, sad, frustrated, and drag my tail behind me for a couple of breaths, or maybe a couple of minutes. However, when I am at my best both on and off the golf course I do a great job accepting the situation for what it is, feeling that emotion throughout my body, reconnecting with my breath and letting it be.
There are so many of us that have a tendency of being anxious a large portion of our lives, and we just do not realize the abundance of joy you can get from just letting go of all the extra noise and negative internal dialogue. For example, I am driving and do not get over quick enough, I think this guy is going to be fuming and flipping me off as I get over and he passes, I look over and he does nothing. Let it be. Another example, I am sitting in the cold tub and someone walks in, my eyes are closed and I am thinking people will think I am weird for whatever reason, I look up and no one is looking at me, they are in their own world and on their phones. Let it be. We can all find so much more peace and joy from whatever it is we have to do, as well as the things we love to do in our personal lives by letting it be and doing whatever might allow us to get a little bit closer to the present moment than we were a just a second ago.