One bad round. One bad round in match play, and I had lost my confidence. Luckily, God has blessed me with some amazing people in my life, and Samantha Marks, who is an amazing golfer, and currently plays golf for Arkansas, is one of them. I was feeling down, and I had been working really hard on taking my losses and regarding them as positives in order to help me become better. However, I will openly admit that after my match, I was more focused on the negative than the positive. Thankfully, Samantha helped me remember the positives; how it was God's plan - and that one off day does not change how I had played the previous two days. She told me how, "yes there is no way around the fact that losing is not fun," but then she ended that statement with: "But it is how you respond to it that makes you a champion. It's just ONE bad day."
I really needed that reminder, and at that time too. I am very thankful for her wonderful advice, and it allowed me to reflect back on my round and take away the positives from it. It allowed me to accept what had happened that day, and still be confident in my game. It reminded me that God has a plan for me, and losing my match was part of His plan for me. It reminded me to thank God for how far I had come in the last year, and reminded me that my hard work is paying off - I just have to keep moving along, and one day it will all make sense. It reminded me that God's plan is greater than my plan.
Then Samantha sent me a passage from her book: "365 Pocket Prayers for Women," and it not only hit home, but eased my anxiety on the round I had had earlier that day.
A prayer about WORTH When I'm trying to measure up
It's hard for me to believe that your approval doesn't depend on what I do. I can get so caught up in the experience of serving you that I lose sight of the greatest privilege of all-knowing you and being known by you. May I never forget that having my name registered as a citizen of heaven means that I belong, without question, to your eternal Kingdom. Thank you, Lord! Nothing else I do on earth can compare with that privilege or joy. Free me from the trap of basing my identity and self-worth on my performance. I rejoice that my worth is based solely on your unconditional love.
How awesome is that? Completely turned my day around when I read it.
"Free me from the trap of basing my identity and self-worth on my performance."
If you are anything like me, then you have suffered from this so-called trap. In fact, I greatly suffered from it after losing my first match at the US Women's Amateur a couple of days ago. Although it never feels good to lose, this loss really got to me; it lowered my confidence. Coming off the loss, all I felt was embarrassed. I was more worried about how people were going to see how badly I lost, and overlook how well I played earlier to get to that position in the first place. I was extremely down on myself. I let my performance overtake my identity. But my performance does not prove my self-worth, it does not shape my identity. How amazing is it that my self worth is not based on my performance on the golf course, but it is SOLELY based on God's unconditional love. Sometimes I get so fearful of not measuring up to what people's expectations are of me, and when I don't play well - I feel like my self-worth is at an all time low. That is when you need to remind yourself that your worth is based off of God's Unconditional love, and no matter how you perform/how you play/what you shoot, it is not going to change the fact that you have someone who loves you - a bad day of golf WILL NOT change that, even if it feels like it will. It won't.
Another thing is you also need to develop your own unconditional love for yourself; that way if your performance is not up to par, you are still content with the day and what has happened, because it is just ONE day of golf. Instead of being hard on yourself, love yourself for fighting through the round, and getting the most out of it that you possibly could have. Love yourself enough to remind yourself that a bad round doesn't take anything away from all the good rounds you have played. Love yourself enough to believe that a bad round does not mean that you are a bad player; it simply means that you are human - and golf is hard, for everyone - even the Pros. Love yourself to know that you are much more than your performance. You are able to take away the positives, and know what you need to do to prepare better for the next round of golf. You have the power to make yourself happy or unhappy. Not events. YOU get to choose which it shall be. That round of golf is over, there is nothing more you can do about it. Focus on the NOW. You are able to choose happiness. I have right now, and I choose to be happy in it.
Always remember that you are worth SO much more and your identity is SO much greater than your performance on the golf course and the score you posted that day.
My motto: God's plan > my plan.
Like Samantha said: "Yes there is no way around the fact that losing is not fun, but it is how you respond to it that makes you a champion."
I'm choosing to respond in a way that will help make me a champion. I'm choosing to love myself unconditionally, just as God loves me unconditionally. I'm choosing to be happy today, and not let my performance reflect on my self-worth and my identity.
So how will you respond?