• Nigel

Life Lessons From the Game of Golf #3 Honesty

Updated: Apr 19, 2018

One of the things I found very appealing about the game of golf is that honesty is at the very heart of it. Whenever you play a round of golf your character, along with your skill and ability, is tested. My first big golf test in honesty came when I decided to get a handicap.

The standard procedure at my club is to submit 3 completed scorecards signed by a club member who has a recognised handicap. The highest handicap for a male player is 28. As I’m sure you can understand, no one wants to be seen as being at the very bottom, so the idea is to try and submit 3 of your very best cards. The temptation is to fudge your scores to ensure you get a ‘decent’ handicap. This is where honesty comes in.

Like the ‘game of life’, you can compete against others along the way, but ultimately it is a game you play against yourself. Often I play a round of golf on my own and the challenge is ‘Do I play the ball where it lands or do I move it and change its lie to suit myself and make it easier to play?’. I have found that the biggest tests of character that I face are not when I am with people, but rather when I am on my own, when no one is watching. Most people have no difficulty being honest when they are with people, but the big question is how honest are you when you’re on your own?

Something I’ve learned from the game of golf is that every time you cheat, you cheat yourself because it will always show when your game is put to the test. And the same is true in life; every time you are dishonest, lie or cheat, ultimately you cheat yourself because it will always show up in some way.

There is a universal principle known as the Law of Sowing and Reaping which states that where you are and what you experience today is a result of choices and decisions you made in the past.

Cheating on the golf course may give you better scores and win you a few matches, but it will not make you a better player. In life you may be able to get away with being dishonest for a time but it will always catch up with you eventually.

Remember, honesty is the best policy.

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