Throwing My Loop…
By: Michael Johnson
Keep Throwing Your
Ben Hogan said, “Almost everyone has the ability to be a
better player. The problem is they just don't know how.”
Meaning if we can find someone to teach us – and we would
listen - we could improve a great deal. And finding someone
to teach us can be a challenge. Good help is hard to find.
There is certainly no shortage of experts. There are gurus, private
lessons, clinics, and of course, most of our friends
think they know exactly what we should do to raise our
level of performance. Problem is those avenues rarely change
us significantly for the better. There is nothing wrong with
going to clinics or taking a private lesson. Of course they
can be helpful, but to really change your ways, to see,
feel, and know you are doing better? How do we do that?
1. Be prepared to work! At one time in my life, I believed
that people at the top of any profession spent most of
their time wearing shades while floating on a rubber raft
in the pool - with one of those little umbrella drinks at
their side. I couldn't have been more wrong! People at the
top work more than others. That's how they reached the
top, and everyone agrees...that's how they stay there.
Let's say a person is lucky enough to find a true
“teacher.” If we are not prepared to put in the required
time and effort, no matter how great the teacher,
improvement will not come.
2. Learn to listen! Here is a scene I've witnessed
countless times. The student asks the master a question
and the master gives an answer. Then the student says
something like, “Oh, I've already tried that. I can't do
it that way.” Or, “Yes, I know what you mean, but that
doesn't work for me.” The master then says, “Fine. Do it
your way,” and walks away. The student is always surprised
that the master seems annoyed. On each of these occasions,
the student would then turn to me and say, “Well, I made
him mad. Why? I don't understand why he's irritated with
me.” Here's the reason he's mad. When you ask a master
(who can do the thing better than you) a question, and
then tell him his answer won't work, the master knows you
are not ready to learn. Masters have a hard time dealing
with fools. Here's a line taught to me long ago...
“To learn to do a thing...
Ask a master.
Listen to the master. Don't talk. Listen.
Do what the master says for an extended period of time.
And someday you might be a master, too.
3. Find a Master. This can be a challenge – but it can
be done. (I can only help you a little as it took me 50
years to find three.) Here are some things to look for in
a true teacher...
* They are not “experts.” They are “seekers.”
* True teachers have no need to impress others with
* True teachers like us.
* They have faith in us – more than we do in ourselves.
They know we will do well.
* We will have long term relationships with them.
* Be a good student. True teachers can only help good
So, if we spend time and effort to find a true teacher, and
we listen, and we do the work required, our opportunity to
improve increases dramatically. These tasks are not easy.
(Indeed, sometimes they cause trying times for the soul.)
But if we don't lose heart, on occasion we find the most
surprising thing – and that is that the Spirit did not
short-change us after all. The ability to achieve our
heart's desire was within all the time. We just had to work
to make it come out.
Reminds me of what my daddy and uncles always said when I missed a
“What did I do wrong?” I would ask. And no matter if I threw it too
high, or on the ground, or waved it off the steer's horns,
their answer was always the same...
“The reason you missed son,” they would say...
“is because you haven't thrown your loop enough.”
-- Michael Johnson
Sharon and Rowdy