Teed Off (Feb. 9, 2014)
with Robert Bicknell
With the Year of the Horse entering at full gallop, we need to think about setting reasonable, yet achievable goals for the coming year. What was past is past, look forward with the wind in your hair and a smile on your face.
People who don't set goals don't seem to achieve any of them. Yes, I know - Duh. But it's true. You have to set them to reach them and, once reached, set new higher ones. The trick is to make the goals achievable and then plot a road map towards achieving them.
What, that sounds like too much work? Good luck then and see you next year when we can try this again…
For those of you who are goal oriented, be it in business or personal, keep things realistic. Even if you don't reach the goal, you will be better off than you were before. Keep striving.
For example, my goals in the coming year include getting by fitness to a higher level through more intense works outs, eating more cleanly and getting more sleep (something which seems to elude me more as I get older). Another goal is to hit my driver 355 yards.
While this might sound impossible, especially for a crazy 55-year-old man, I believe that it can be done, but will take a lot of effort in both technique and physical fitness. Nothing worthwhile ever comes easy and this is one of those times. I have busted a few drives out to 340 yards last year, but not consistently, so while I believe I can do it, it will take work.
Of course, once I achieve that goal, I will have a different problem of figuring out what clubs to hit on shorter holes. That's a problem which would be fun to have.
I also plan to continue my effort to quit smoking once and for all. I gave it a shot over the Western New Year and lasted all of 48 hours. The good news is that I cut back from almost three packs a day to less than one. I figure I can get it down to half a pack and then go cold turkey from there. We will see.
What I would like to also see this year is the golf community in Viet Nam pitching in to create more Junior Golf programmes and tournaments. This is the future of golf in Viet Nam and the club owners should realise this simple fact. Golfers are a renewable resource, but only if they are encouraged to take up the game in the first place. There are a lot of professionals in the country who are willing to help, but we need to be asked before we can do anything.
We have begun to make inroads into Junior Golf last year, but we need to take it further. Every club should be encouraging their members to bring their kids to the course. Father - son/daughter events should be scheduled and promoted just as thoroughly as we do the adult events. There should be a Junior Club Championship as well.
As we get older and play less, we need to have younger people entering the game, otherwise it will die a slow death.
We should also try to make 2014 the Year of Health and Fitness for all of us.
Listen, if your idea of recreation is a TV remote, beer and a bag of Doritos, you need to get a grip on reality. It doesn't get any easier as you get older, so you'd better think about getting healthier now before you cannot do it later.
Eating healthy doesn't have to be boring and uninspired. It can be quite satisfying and has the benefit of improving your health. Think about hitting the gym once in a while as well. There are a lot of fitness coaches who can design a programme that will help you achieve your goals without killing you in the process… but you have to start sooner rather than later.
Keeping to a healthy lifestyle most of the week will also make those occasional beers taste that much better and the hangover will not be so severe.
So, for the coming year, set goals that benefit you. Keep them reasonable and by this time next year, you will be a lot happier. — VNS