How to practice like it matters

I just finished playing a game of golf with my son. He is trying out for his high school team so it is important to him to be at his best. Me, I’m not trying out for any team, and even if I were, I would get cut after the first hole. In a word, I “suck”. My son on the other hand is pretty good. Our game today was a practice run for him. It wasn’t for me and there lies the difference in the quality of our games.

He practiced like it mattered. Me, I just teed up as fast as I could and let ‘er fly. I also tried to “powder” the ball as hard as I could. There’s something primal about hitting a ball as hard as you can- me man. My son had a lot more discipline and finesse. He took his time with each tee and tried to adjust the power of his swing depending on the length of the hole. He handled his short game with with patience and deliberation.

To practice anything that’s important requires discipline and finesse. Practice doesn’t make perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect. You have to take your time and try and do it right. ┬áSo, if you want to excel in anything it requires a consistent discipline in practicing perfectly and a deft touch adjusting for the changing topography of everyday life. You can’t just wing it and expect good results.

I hope my son makes the team. His practice matters to him and to me.


Posted in adaptation, Behavior, Uncategorized
3 comments on “How to practice like it matters
  1. Lauren says:

    Good luck to Josh! :)

  2. Doug says:

    Jeff, I love these stories and wisdom from time with your son. Much like my posts at, you’ve captured the everyday lessons of ‘Full-Circle Fatherhood’ with simple poignancy. Thanks for sharing, and keep up your good work as a blogger and a father.


    Doug Gertner
    The Grateful Dad

  3. It’s great to read great support for Josh as well as affirmations on being a father. Nice unexpected gifts.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Get fresh content delivered free!

* indicates required
Follow Me

Jeff Vankooten is a speaker and author focusing on the power of resilience to effectively engage the challenges of change. He helps leaders, businesses, and organizations develop the skills necessary to thrive in an increasingly unpredictable business environment.
Check Availability
Listen to Jeff’s interview on A Closer Look radio show