"The antidote to exhaustion is..."
"not necessarily rest. The antidote to exhaustion is WHOLEHEARTEDNESS." What a benedictine monk (that's a depiction of Benedicta of Nursia - Saint Benedict - just north on your screen) told English poet David Whyte, author of The Heart Aroused: Poetry and the Preservation of the Soul in Corporate America, during a particularly stressful time in his life.
In need of something less fantasmical to peruse, in place of the preachings from the pandering-for-likes-and-$ (the race to the bottom is alive and well!) golf experts flooding your blue-lit screens? Me too; clicky click where you like...
What in the name of Dante might this concept have to do with your golf (it's rather obvious, isn't it, in regards to that other game you play 24/7 - life) you query? Quite a bit, actually. Keep reading, brothers and sisters - CS channeling a foursome of really big hitters on this day of remembrance for corporate America (and all the world, really) in this missive to point your noggin' in a direction of positive, beneficial and meaningful action...
The Rule of St. Benedict
'Twas this Saint's main achievement if you will, what he's holding in his right hand. The 'rule' had a unique spirit of balance, moderation and reasonableness.
* Do your goals (ditch the expectations, once and for all, prego)? Or is your golf goal rule book chock-a-block full of "supposed to's & shoulds (that's somebody else talking, BTW)?" Are they reasonable for the amount of time and talent you have at your disposition? If not, the cloak on your shoulders will be heavy with disappointment and disillusion.
* Are your mind and body balanced before you hit a shot? Or are you off-kilter, anxious and asymmetrical? There are ways to bring your system into greater harmony - did you not get the memo?
* Does your practice entail moderation and quality- or is it grotesque, non-varied & zero-consequence ball-whacking? Perhaps the endorphin filled - yet non-transferable to the golf course - act of grooving a club or pattern? The playing of the game of golf is one of multitudes of different lies, situations and experiences; you getting mired in irrelevant 'skill-building' and pointless repetition?
And that game of life? Heeding St. Benedict's rule - or incessantly going after more? More revenue. More things. More accolades. Then you wonder why you're exhausted? I don't...
Understand that wholeheartedness is about doing things you have passion and affection for. That rest, although much needed and unfortunately maligned and misunderstood in this day and age, may not be your antidote. So, where to turn for the antidote? That magic potion? The righteous nectar? Within, of course.
"The most regretful people on earth, are those who felt the call to creative work, who felt their own creative power restive and uprising, and gave to it neither power nor time.”
-- Mary Oliver
You? Your creative power being squashed by some golf know-it-all's flimsy theories? His/one way or the highway? Exhaustive. Suffice to watch the best players in the world to see all the wonderfully different ways to swing and play.
So: when are you going to give your passion & style the power and time? And your 'vocation?' Keeping up with the Joneses? Waiting to sleep until your dead (you'll be dead sooner than you think - especially if you neglect those precious ZZZ)? On the more is better bandwagon?
Your clock is ticking...
"Whoso would be a man must be a nonconformist,"
-- Ralph Waldo Emerson
Your ongoing exhaustion caused from your conformist nature? Fitting in. Working hard. Staying busy. It's what happens in method golf swing instruction, if you hadn't noticed. Man or woman - you must find your way, your swing, your feel. And that's what a good instructor, coach, guide ('boss,' dare I say?) does. Remember: the best teachers are those that tell you where to look, but don't tell you what to see...
Oh, and that non-stop busyness?
"It's not enough to be busy. So are the ants. The question is: What are we busy about?
-- Henry David Thoreau
Amen. Mistaking activity ('busyness') for achievement, yet again? 'More' on HGH? Exhausting. The antidote? Less but better. Less time but higher quality. Less to think about in your golf swing, 'cause you've addressed the cause of your miss-behaving ball. Less time toiling in affairs that others may in fact have passion, affection, and energy, for.
And the sheer act of walking in nature - like what happens wandering around the golf park. Did the therapeutic offerings of the grass and ground underfoot, the trees, and the wildlife, go whizzing by you as you were checking the latest and (not so) greatest on your dumbphone, or in the quest for smaller #'s on your scorecard? I understand. But Mr. Thoreau would not...
"The tragedy of a man's life is what dies inside of him while he lives,"
That quote wake/shake you up? GOOD! 'Cause the alarm clock next to your bed only has so many more reps in it.
Blake, the English poet, painter and philosopher (aren't we all, deep down?) was considered mad by his contemporaries for his idiosyncratic views. Only later on and in current times, is held in high regard for his expressiveness and creativity, in addition to the mystical undercurrents of his work.
-- Henry David Thoreau
What's dying inside of you, daily? Too many lives lost on this day not so long ago, but you are alive, well & vertical. Whatcha doing with those breaths, anyway? In your workplace. In your golf practice regime. In attempting to adopt some hair-brained, non-science nor experience-based swing trend. Exhausting indeed.
The antidote: disobey - civilly, please - ASAP! Embrace your passion, your desires & your way; beware of the dysfunctional norm.
"Sooner murder an infant in its cradle than nurse unacted desires."
-- William Blake
Exhausted and mad - in both senses of the word - overworked & underappreciated, with no end in site? With your golf game, and in your daily doings: No apparent light at the end of the tunnel? The antidote?
Well, you already know it, friends. It's been whispering to you for some time now, you've just been too distracted by deadlines, budgets and what score you're 'supposed to' (who is that anyway, yapping in your ear?) shoot to listen, to take note - then to take action.
Rest all you want in this season of change we call autumn. Your mind, body and soul are probably desperate for it. But when it's time to raise again, exhaustion will once again be nipping at your heels if you continue in your drudgery of dispassionate work, on and off the links.
Need a nudge? Or rather a swift kick in the arse or whack over the head with the butt end of a 5-iron? Some guidance in the process?
I'm here for you. At Eugene Country Club - or a golf park in warmer climes this winter.
"Better to have a short life that is full of what you like doing, than a long life spent in a miserable way,"
-- Alan Watts
~ CS ~