I have a confession to make. My golf swing sucks.
It’s worse though. I’ve been taking golf lessons.
After playing golf for more than 30 years, I decided it was time to be humble and invest in some lessons with a golf pro. No doubt my golf buddies will get a big kick out of my confession.
My swing didn’t always suck. I was a 20 handicap and I’d shoot a game in the low to mid 90s.
So what changed? I was doing everything the same but the circumstances had changed.
I’ve lost 98 lbs since September 2013 and because my body has changed, what used to work for me doesn’t work any more. My extra weight restricted my swing. Now I have much greater range of movement and I’ve also been working out with weights.
As I’ve lost the weight, I’ve seen my game go to hell. I don’t enjoy playing golf unless I’m playing a pretty decent game. I’m still competitive and I don’t want to embarrass myself. So I realized I had to re-learn how to play golf with a different physique and I wanted to do it quickly with an instructor, instead of figuring it all out for myself.
It’s not like I’ve never had golf lessons though. I would usually have a lesson once a year, just for a tweak, because I always wanted to improve my own game. I’m the same way in business. Even though I have competitors, I’m also competing against myself because I always want to be better, or my competition will beat me.
There’s always something you can do to improve, whether it’s your business or your golf swing. Each time you go onto the golf course you have to challenge yourself. The same is true in your law practice. You have to constantly tweak things, trying to improve them.
You can’t just rest on your laurels because it can all go to hell when you get lazy and sloppy and taking things for granted.
In golf, if you get lazy, you could start to hook your ball or slice it. With your law practice, if you get lazy, you could go out of business.
Learning new things doesn’t happen overnight. You need to take it step by step. The golf pro started on my stance and then my grip. We then moved onto short shots and then a full swing, getting the club back far enough and following all the way through. With each lesson, we add a little bit more to my skill-set. It takes time, practice and work.
And the same is true with building a preeminent law practice. Circumstances are always changing and what you used to do is not always going to be effective now. You need to constantly add to what you already know. Add a new piece, digest it and absorb it. Once you get good at it, move on to the next step.
I’ve put my ego out of the way by admitting that I wasn’t too good to take golf lessons. For some men though, their pride gets in the way, whether it’s over their game of golf or how effective they are at running a successful law practice.
The truth is – nobody knows everything. If you want to feel like you’re doing the best you can then you have to invest time and energy in constant improvement, tweaking and refining what you do.
If it’s your golf game that needs tweaking, swallow your pride and go and hire a golf pro. If it’s your law practice that needs tweaking then you can get the edge you need by joining PILMMA, the Personal Injury Lawyers Marketing & Management Association and attending our Super Summit this July in Chicago.