Rhythm and Tempo, not for Golf only

Recently, I've been trying to make some lifestyle changes, including sleep patterns, eating habits, church attendance, work-style habits, etc... and a lot.

I haven't been as successful as I might have liked and I've been trying to figure out why. What am I doing wrong?

Reading my friend Seth Simonds' Primal Stride blog, I've learned a lot about focusing on my strengths, finding what works best for me, and trying to make my adjustments with those things in mind.

Still, whenever I try to make changes I find myself out of whack, no rhythm, no tempo, and I quickly resort to my previous behaviors.

What am I doing wrong? What am I missing?

I found some needed perspective courtesy of my Uncle Dale.

He's a great guy, likes to tell jokes, likes to tinker, has more tools than Bob Vila, and only recently, i.e. within the last 3 years or so has decided to take up golf.

I'm glad that Uncle Dale took up golf mostly because his primary reason for doing so was so he could join us to play in Golf for Joy, our annual outing honoring our daughter Meghan Joy's memory.

But when Uncle Dale gets into something, he doesn't just take it up casually. It consumes him.

Outfits, instruction manuals, DVD's, books, you name it - he's been checking it out and trying to improve his golf game. He is convinced that with enough practice and the right methods, par golf or better is right around the corner.

No really, he believes it. For the non-golfers in the crowd - well, let's just say that while not impossible this idea is a little far-fetched.

Still, I love my Uncle's enthusiasm, his willingness to try anything and everything to improve his game.

When we played together last month he was very excited to show me his new swing technique, the stack and tilt. (The link is for the golfers in the crowd.)

Now, I love my Uncle, but from my vantage point his swing technique looked a lot like the tilt-a-whirl rather than anything resembling a golf swing. By the end of the day I had to confess to him that while I believed there were DVDs and instruction manuals of his method, clearly something was missing.

Last week, Uncle Dale sent a copy of the DVDs and lo and behold I was right. He was doing it wrong.

That got me thinking... (You saw the smoke right?)

As I have developed my own golf swing over the last 17 years, I learned the importance of rhythm and tempo in finding a good golf swing.

Is it possible that I simply need to apply the patience and effort I put into my golf swing to develop a rhythm and tempo for other areas of my life?

Uncle Dale called me last night to ask what I thought of the swing method. We laughed and joked about how he'd been doing it wrong. He said that he had talked to someone familiar with the method who helped him correct some flaws. The new approach took quite a few strokes off his next round of golf.

We talked about how his new swing method was among many not endorsed by golf pros primarily because most want to teach their own thing.

Then I mentioned to Uncle Dale that I thought that there were probably a number of valid golf methods, all of which were just fine as long as they keep some core ideas at the forefront, including:

rhythm and tempo.

"Yes, those are important," my Uncle reasoned, "But not everybody has the same rhythm and tempo..."


There's a saying in golf that says: "If it feels funny, you're doing it right."

This doesn't really jibe with rhythm and tempo, but it makes sense.

I just need to find a way to apply it to myself, to make it my life swing thought.

What's your life swing thought?


Cat said...

Currently my tempo is Adagio, but I much prefer Vivace!

Jim Brochowski said...

Hey Cat,

I did have to look those up, but...
Thanks for the music lesson.
I think you have done an extraordinary job of maintaining a continued pursuit of your Vivace tempo, during this adagio'd tempo time in your life.

I think it really is about finding our rhythms and knowing when we need to tune things up so to speak, or maybe decide that we just need to let the music play, as it were.