The last couple of years have been very strenuous on my mind and have given me a lot of time to figure out who I am and what it is that has caused me such great anxiety. All of us suffer from anxiety by some stretch of the imagination and I think one of the biggest reasons is because we do not realize that failure is a beautiful thing. After all, it shows us that we are human and what we need to work on to push forward and be better the next time an opportunity presents itself. I will use my progress as a golfer to display the significance of what I am trying to get at. This past summer I played pretty solid leading into school and had not played a college event in a year in a half. I arrived at school thinking I was prepared and I was going to continue to play well without any major setbacks. I then started to develop some serious performance anxiety where I felt like every time I failed or had an off round, the road was over for me, or I had failed myself. These feelings hurt you internally for some time, but the more and more you feed this narrative that it is not okay to fail or I need to be perfect or even I am a failure to my family, the more your mind starts to believe it. I was searching for validation from whoever would give it to me and had lost all sense of my true self-confidence, which any athlete knows is an absolute nightmare.
The thing I came to realize about this poor semester of golf is that I could take it one way or another. I could push myself harder than I ever have in the off-season and try and be the best version of myself for the springtime, or I could contribute to battle this “poor me” narrative and feel bad for myself. I chose to use these poor performances as fuel and as a learning curve to get down to the roots of where I needed to polish up and the weakest chains that needed to be worked on. We all can change our perspectives to look at our failures amd know that we can grow from them.