The Golf Performance Center Ridgefield, CT

Vertical Time vs Horizontal Time;
There is a Difference!

In normal times this month is one of the most exciting months of the year with US Open and the Open Championships being played. However, this year is not normal, Covid-19 has made sure of that!  We can watch re-runs of these major championships on the Golf Channel to spark our interest.   

One of the coolest things about watching these Championships is seeing how diverse the field is.  I find myself wondering what a player’s journey was to get there.  How did the best golfers in the world get to the Open Championship, was this their dream?  Have you ever dreamed about playing in the US Open or the Open Championship?  What do you think it will take for you to get there? 

Let me help you answer these questions by offering some advice on time management.  You first need to know where you are starting from, second is to understand the two views of time management, vertical time and horizontal time. You can look at vertical time as the amount of time in a day and horizontal time is the amount of time in your lifetime.  When thinking about a task you must place the task in one of these two categories and in some cases both.

Ok now for the hard question, which one are you, vertical or horizontal time challenged?  For some of our newsletter audience (junior golf athletes looking to play college golf) you may find that you more closely align to the vertical time management theory based on the amount of work that needs to get done in short period of time but for our adult audience you may think more about the horizontal time management theory, looking to enjoy the game more, improve consistently over time while staying healthy and active.  The challenge for both is to stay patient, as a saying goes, it’s hard to bake a good cake in a microwave!  For those players seeking immediate gratification there is no way around working on vertical time, you are working on the freight train going down tracks with no brakes and you need to fix the brakes before you get to the end of the line. In other words, vertical time means you work hard until it’s fixed so you don’t crash.  This kind of time is expensive in many ways, it is highly stressful, detracts from quality and the ability to work at the same pace for extended periods of time for sustainable improvement is nearly impossible. This can cause frustration which turns into quitting.  On the contrary for those players seeking to achieve lofty goals with a horizontal time mindset has a way of being less stressful, long term productivity and quality of your work goes way up. In turn the enjoyment factor goes up.  Usually when you enjoy something you stick with it longer!

Golf has a way of turning us into freight trains, barreling down the tracks without brakes. When you feel this frustration coming on, take a breath, step back, remember why you are playing golf, think about the consequences of letting your frustration get in the way of a beautiful afternoon on the course painting a masterpiece one stroke at a time.  Of course, anytime you are working on improving yourself, growth breeds challenges, there will be failure but when you can place your mindset on the correct timeline, vertical or horizontal it will reduce your frustration and you may find yourself improving faster. 

I read a great line from an unidentified author talking about goal setting.  It read, “When setting your goals remember not to set your goals under the dam that is about to break for you will be working day and night without sleep.”   

Enjoy Your Journey!

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