Monday, December 28, 2015

CORE Triumph! 4-step Strategy for Success

As this year comes to an end and a new year is about to begin take some time to think about all that you have accomplished in 2015. If you didn't reach some of your larger goals, focus on the smaller areas. What did you do in 2015 that makes you feel proud?

A key to growing and succeeding is learning. What can you learn from 2015? What worked and what did not? Give yourself some time to review 2015 and record the valuable lessons.

Now it's time to look forward! This is your time, this is your year to reach your potential and I’ll be right there to coach you all the way!
I will continue to provide you with skills and strategies for success in life and golf! 

We are going to start with my 4-step strategy for success, CORE Triumph! This proven strategy will put you on the path to reach your goals.  CORE Triumph! is an acronym … C for Coach, O for Outcome, R for Reasons, and E is for Execution!

Most successful people have a teacher, mentor or coach.  If you will allow me, I would be honored to be your personal coach … and golf professional!  It is thrilling for me to teach this game of golf! I’ve guided and coached thousands of students … with great success and I’m confident that I can help you reach your goals! 

Using CORE Triumph! - You will have clarity in your goals, the motivation to achieve them and the plan to triumph!   With a just a little time and focus you will reach your outcome! 

You have already done Step one in Core Triumph, you have a coach! Me! I suggest you also find mentors who have succeeded in the area you would like to triumph this year.

Step two in CORE triumph is to know your outcome.  Ask yourself what you want to achieve in golf and / or life.

Almost all successful ventures begin with setting a goal, knowing your outcome, where you want to go!  If you get in your car without knowing your destination you’ll never arrive!! Think about your ideal future and write it down. Is it to make more money, start your own business, get in shape, lose weight, shoot even par, give more to charity ... what do you want in life?

Step three is Reason.  Ask yourself why your vision is important to you!  How will it change your life?  Make your reasons as compelling as possible so you are truly motivated! 

The truth is, to be successful you need to picture your outcome and know your reasons why you want that outcome before you start! 

The fourth step in CORE is the E - Execution!  Write down your plan to reach your outcome. Be specific with your plan with dates and times!

It’s time to execute …. take action …  with Energy! 

CORE Triumph! A proven 4-step strategy for success! Get started! Write down your CORE Triumph! plan for success!!

Make 2016 your best your ever! You can do it!

Live Positive - Be Positive - Golf Positive 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Attitude of Gratitude

One of the best and easiest ways to have an even happier life is to have an attitude of gratitude!

According to Harvard Health Publications, Harvard Medical School, "gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships." Sign me up for all of it!

It's important that you make a conscious effort everyday to be thankful. I found that starting my day with this simple question, "What am I thankful for?" sets me up perfectly. My first answer is always my family and my friends, and then usually my home. Each day I think of different items that I really appreciate like, chairs, electricity, my bed, music and the talented and creative people who invented instruments! I spend about two to five minutes thinking about and visualizing things that I am thankful for and it truly makes me happy. I highly recommend creating this habit for yourself! Start tomorrow morning. When you wake up, before getting out of bed, ask yourself, "What am I thankful for?" One morning my list included toilet paper. Now that's something to be thankful for! Have fun with your list!

You are in charge of your thoughts. Your thoughts will create your emotions. By filling your mind with thoughts of gratitude you will feel happy positive emotions! Say thank you to others as often as possible throughout the day, it will make both you and the recipient feel awesome!

The Harvard Health Publication as revealed that "a study of couples found that individuals who took the time to express gratitude for their partner not only felt more positive toward the other person but also felt more comfortable expressing concerns about their relationship."

Even if you are going through a difficult time, do your best to count your blessings instead of your heartaches.
Thank you for the medicine! Thank you for the support! Thank you that I'm not in the accident that caused all of this traffic! Thank you for the opportunity to learn!

There are times during a round of golf you need to take a moment to look around and think, "I'm thankful that I am on this beautiful golf course today!" It will ease the disappointment of a poor shot.

Make each moment of your life amazing by having an attitude of gratitude!

Be positive, live positive, golf positive!


Friday, October 23, 2015

Focus on Success

Successful people have razor sharp focus on their goals! In life you get what you focus on which includes your thoughts, actions, dreams and the words you say to yourself! 

I recently had the amazing opportunity to be around and interact with an inspiring and accomplished group of female athletes at the Annual Women's Sports Foundation. The WSF was founded in 1974 by tennis legend, Billie Jean King. It is dedicated to advancing the lives of girls and women through sports and physical activity.

One of the athletes, who I had previously not heard about, caught my attention. She is an extraordinary person who had to overcome tremendous challenges since the day she was born. Tatyana McFadden was born with a disease called Spina Bifida, which is a hole in her spine. She was paralyzed from the waist down. She spent the first six and a half years of her life in an orphanage in Russia, with no access to a wheelchair. Tatyana had some big challenges but she did not see it that way! Tatyana focussed on what was possible and what she wanted to do, not on her limitations. So when wanted to keep up with the other children and play, she figured out a way. Tatyana learned to walk on her hands. She did not accept a limiting belief that she could not play because she could not walk. When there is a will there is a way, and Tatyana found a way.

She was adopted in 1994 by American, Deborah McFadden, then Commissioner of Disabilities for the US Department of Health. Tatyana was thrilled with her new exciting life and all of the opportunities ahead. Unfortunately, her health worsened and her family was told that she may only live a couple more years. The families focus immediately turned to what was possible for Tatyana. They pictured a strong healthy girl who was active and happy!

To gain strength and work towards the dream they could imagine, Tatyana played various sports including wheelchair basketball, swimming, ice hockey and scuba diving. She found her passion, wheelchair racing! Her health improved drastically and she became an incredibly strong world class athlete! Tatyana always rises higher then any challenge presented. She always focusses I her outcome!

Tatyana's debut into the Paralympics was in 2004 when she was just 15 years old and the youngest on Team USA. She won two medals, in 2008 she won four medals, 2012 she added four more including three golds! At the 2013 World Championships she became the first athlete in history to win six gold medals at the same competition. Always looking for the next challenge, Tatyana added another completion to her schedule, she joined the professional marathon circuit. She has won the Chicago, London, Boston and New York marathons and is the first person, able bodied or disabled to with the Grand Slam (4 World Major Marathons in the same year!) She has accomplished it two years in a row and will complete her third Grand Slam if she wins the NYC Marathon November 1.

Not wanting to let a season pass without a race, Tatyana also competes in the Winter Paralympics in cross country skiing. With limited experience, she won a silver medal in 2013.

Tatyana focusses on her goals and ideal outcomes in her life. Then she has the drive and passion to accomplish her goals! I love the quote that points out that the word impossible truly says, "I'm Possible!" 

Pay attention to your thoughts, words and actions. You will get what you focus on, so focus on your ideal outcome and the life you want. Live, breath and dream about your goals! 

Golf Positive - Be Positive - Live Positive

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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Superhero Performance

Certain players onTeam USA at the Solheim Cup Sunday’s singles matches elevated their performance to another dimension, a superhero level. The US Team was losing 10-6 heading into the 12 singles matches. Team Europe only need 4 points to retain the Solheim Cup, but something in the US players said, “No!”

We certainly had the pleasure of witnessing absolutely amazing golf and a mental focus we all would like to achieve! Let’s examine the peak performance mindset…

The concept of Flow was coined by professor Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi in 1975 as he explained in his book, Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. The word Flow is synonymous with ‘being in the zone' or in the ‘Flow channel' or in a state ‘fluid performance'. Superfluidity is the supreme Flow experience. It is an ego-less state of "Super Flow" marked by zero friction (rubbing/slowing), zero viscosity (resistance to flowing) and Superconductivity (zero loss of energy).

Imagine playing a round of golf, or being active in any event or project, and staying out of your own way, and experiencing zero friction?

While researching the concept of peak performance and superfluidity I came across Christopher Bergland, world-class endurance athlete, who has a Guinness World Record for running (153.76-miles in 24 hours on a treadmill) and is the three-time champion of the Triple Ironman, which is a 7.2-mile swim, 336-mile bike, followed by a 78.6-mile run done consecutively. 

Chris explains, “Superfluidity is a state of perfect harmony. When you are so immersed in what you are doing that you completely become one with the task at hand to the point that your ego dissolves you are in a state of Superfluidity.” 

Most of us are in a state of flow while truly focussing on a task, project, or competition. The professional athlete can maintain that state of flow throughout a competition and avoid most negative thoughts, anxiety, fears or doubts or as Csiksgentmihalyi would call it, “friction.”

To reach the absolute peak performance, a superhuman experience, it’s superfluidity! It’s an entirely different level then flow. Chris says, “To achieve this state it is necessary that you ‘let go' and get out of the way of your ego stored in the prefrontal cortex.”

I believe that is exactly what happened to some of our US players after the unsportsman like action of European player, Suzann Petterson. The player’s ‘let go’ and got out of their own way as their focus was on the prize and redemption! 
You probably already know what happened. On the 17th hole of the Saturday afternoon four ball competition between Suzann Pettersen and her partner Charley Hull against Brittany Lincicome and Alison Lee, Pettersen claimed that the 16 inch putt Lee had left for par to tie the hole was not verbally conceded. Lee picked up the ball as Hull was obviously walking off the green towards the next hole and Pettersen was not  in her sight. Although no verbal concessions were made, the actions of the players communicated, ‘That’s good, let’s go to the next hole.” The rules official with the group had no choice but to give the hole to the Europeans, who went on to win the match.

This certainly fired up the American team!

Let’s examine the superfluid play of some of the American players:
Lexi Thompson, US Teams first player out was 7-under par through 14 holes and halved her match.
Morgan Pressel beat the always tough player Catriona Mathew.
Alison Lee was 2 down through 4 holes and then went into superfluid mode, making 3 birdies in a row, then birdied 3 of the last 7 holes to her match.
Gerina Piller was all square through the 9th hole and then birdied 4 of the next 6 holes. On the 18th hole, Piller needed to make a 12 foot par putt to keep the European Team from getting the last 1/2 point they needed to keep the cup! She made that pressure packed putt!
Lizette Salas was 1 down through 11 and then birdied 5 of the next 6 holes to win, 3 & 1.
Angela Stanford was taking on the very intense, Suzann Pettersen in her singles match, and started her round birding 4 of the first 6 holes. With par’s from holes 7-14, Stanford found herself all square, but then she birdied 15 and 16. It seemed fitting that Stanford closed out Pettersen with a par on hole 17, where the earlier incident occurred. 
Cristie Kerr was 3 down after 4 holes but then went to another dimension and birdied 7 out of the next 8 holes!
Michelle Wie’s intensity was evident as I watched her on the first tee preparing for her match! Her peak performance state helped her to birdie 8 of 14 holes, including 5 in a row to defeat Caroline Hewall!
Paula Creamer was the anchor player for the US Team and she proved that she was worthy of that position! She started her round with 5 par’s and then birdied 5 out of the next 8 holes including 3 in row to win 4 & 3 over Sandra Gal.

It was a time that the players became one with the mission and were absorbed into a state of complete concentration and focus on the prize! Many talk about the incident on the 17th green with Pettersen being the fuel that lit the fire and put the US Team players into their superfluid peak performance state. I agree!

Be Positive - Live Positive - Golf Positive

Monday, August 24, 2015

Say, "YES!" to Opportunities in Life

The email arrived from Nancy Henderson, LPGA Chief Teaching Officer and President of the LPGA Foundation, asking to set up a time to talk. I didn’t know what she wanted to talk about. At the time I was part of the selection process to be on the Golf Channel, so I thought it might be concerning that opportunity. It wasn’t.

On February 27, we had our call. Little did I know, the call was about something much greater then being on the Golf Channel, it was an opportunity to impact the lives of teenage girls in a positive life altering way. Nancy invited me to be the lead LPGA Professional on a new initiative through the Girls Golf Program, an LPGA Leadership Academy! She explained that the goal is to teach leadership skills through golf in a 2-day program. My answer was a resounding, “Yes!”

Our first meeting was set for a month later to begin to design the 2-day program. I was so excited to work with Nancy in creating this extraordinary program for teenage girls! She is an amazing leader and professional who I have admired and respected since meeting her in the early 1990’s.
We sat with a blank piece of paper and began. Nancy asked, “What are the qualities of a great leader?”

Under the leadership of Nancy, theLPGA Leadership Academy for teenage girls was created and initiated. The first Academy was held on August 9 & 10 at Glen Arbor Country Club. This 2-day program was designed to not only teach skills and strategies for leadership but also to shape and develop leadership behaviors in these young women. 

It was amazing to observe the quiet unsure teens who registered on the first day transform into confident, self assured leaders just two days later. The program included both indoor sessions and outdoor stations.

The indoor sessions taught the girls about personality traits, positive self talk, empowering words, body language, how to feel confident, changing limiting beliefs, formula for success, different types of leaders and so much more!

The sponsor of the Leadership Academy, AXA, brought in a panel of very accomplished and impressive female employees to share their success stories. It was very impactful for all of us to hear about their journeys.

One example of an outdoor station is the putting station. Each girl had a partner and one put on a blindfold. The person with the blindfold was not allowed to speak while her partner talked her through a putting challenge. Once that was complete, they would go to another hole where they both had to be quiet, still with one girl wearing a blindfold. The goal in this station was to teach the very important leadership skill of communication.

Other stations were designed to have the girls experience decision making, overcoming obstacles, self confidence, goal setting, analyzing the strategy and re-adjusting if needed and other valuable leadership characteristics. 

As Nancy Henderson says, “Leadership involves living in the state of possibility, making a commitment to a vision and moving that vision into action.” Through Nancy’s leadership, the vision of developing teenage girls into leaders through golf became a reality!
We are thrilled that AXA has committed to sponsoring four LPGA Leadership Academy’s in 2016! 

Be Positive - Live Positive - Golf Positive

Monday, July 20, 2015

Empowering Beliefs

“What we can or cannot do, what we consider possible or impossible, is rarely a function of our true capability. It is more likely a function of our beliefs about who we are.” Tony Robbins

What are your beliefs as yourself as a golfer? Have you ever have an awesome front 9 only to blow it on the back 9? Or maybe you had a day you were hitting the ball great but your short game was undesirable? Do you ever wonder why that happens? I used to wonder, so I did some research and examined my own experiences to discover the answer.
You have a certain belief and image as to your skill level as a golfer. There is actually a range of golf scores that your brain is programed to shoot, based on your beliefs.  You will live up to that expectation most of the time. 

You may find that you alway score between 96 and 104, or 82 to 94. Examine your last 20 scores and I bet you’ll see a very consistent pattern. So when you have a front 9 that is out of the range, whether high or low, you’ll do the opposite on the back 9, resulting in a score that coincides with your belief.

Let’s breakthrough that bottom number! I want you to keep a master scorecard of a golf course or golf courses that you play often and write down the best score you have ever had on each hole. This is called your ringer score but I want you to write, in big letters on the scorecard “It’s Possible!” Put this master scorecard in a place where you see it everyday. When you get a lower score on one of the holes, be sure to change the score and your total.

In addition to the It’s Possible scorecard, just before you fall asleep for the night, I want you to visualize yourself playing each hole best you have ever played it. Visualize yourself making all of those great shots! Your mind may sometimes wonder to a poor shot, but stop that thought and give yourself a mental mulligan.  Then replay that shot when you did it perfectly!

Also, pay attention to how you describe your round of golf to others. As a golf professional at a club, I’d always ask the members how they played and inevitably they would share, in detail their worst holes! 
Well, I want you to drown yourself and your brain with all great shots instead! 

Let’s Reach Your Potential!
Be Positive - Live Positive - Golf Positive

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Beyond the Country Club

Golf gave me a dream job. Over a period of 15 years, I was the Head Golf Professional at three country clubs.  The respect, recognition and awards poured in from satisfied clients and the Ladies Professional Golf Association. I was on top of the golfing world. But I wanted something more. 

One day I was watching Oprah on television at the height of her career. She said she was striving to reach her full potential. I felt a butterfly in my stomach for two reasons:  First, I felt the same way. I want to use all of my gifts. Second, it shocked me that Oprah felt that she had not reached her full potential yet!

Running the golf operation and teaching golf at country clubs gave me the satisfaction of touching many lives. People picked up on my smile. Anxious clients learned to relax as we laughed and danced a little on the golf course during a lesson or a round. They learned that golf is just a game that’s meant to be enjoyed. For me, the pay was good. But the psychological and emotional rewards were priceless.

Every time a client learned to enjoy playing golf, it reminded me of my own journey.

I started my “golf career” as the employee who picked up golf balls on the driving range. My  vehicle was often used for target practice as I drove around retrieving the practice balls. “Bang!”  I would jump, startled even though I was listening to my Walkman (no iPods yet). When there was a job opening, I asked to become a ranger (now called player assistant)  - and then  moved on to starter, where I sat in the booth with a fellow employee, listening to music and singing Perry Como songs between sending anxious golfers out to play. Unfortunately, our singing didn’t relax them! I was also working hard on my own golf game and playing in tournaments. Next I got the chance to teach an adult school class. None of the professionals wanted to teach a class of 15 people for one hour and make about $10. The job was mine! I was thrilled. That was the moment when I knew that I had found my career in golf.

On each step of my golf career, I felt a tug toward becoming a club professional instead of a playing pro. Teaching made the best use of my natural athletic ability and my love for people.  What a relief.  I’d actually get a guaranteed paycheck, although small at the time, instead of having to play a great game of golf to get paid. 

On each step of my golf career, I felt a tug toward becoming a club professional instead of a playing pro. Teaching made the best use of my natural athletic ability and my love for people.  What a relief.  I’d actually get a guaranteed paycheck, although small at the time, instead of having to play a great game of golf to get paid.

The link to life beyond the country club came through my work with the LPGA. By teaching women on the golf course and inspiring them to use golf to reach their potential, I found my calling. During this time, I was named the Professional of the Year in my section of the LPGA and National Professional of the Year in the LPGA.  I was honored with other awards as well, including the inaugural Nancy Lopez Golf Achievement Award, given to an individual resembling the legendary golf champion Nancy Lopez’s Leadership, Passion, Giving and Approachability.

I formed a national company with a fellow LPGA professional, my fitness professional, sport psychologist and business expert.  We founded the Official Online Amateur Community of the LPGA.  We started the only nationally published women’s golf magazine, hosted a radio show, conducted corporate outings, tournaments and clinics across the country.  We continued to grow during a tough economy.  My experience here provided invaluable insight to the business world. It gave me the tools to go out on my own.

An entrepreneur at heart, I started my own company called, “Golf-Positive.” Everything I’ve experienced, learned and accomplished in my life prepared me to launch this company. Golf-Positive reaches people in a variety of multimedia outlets including books, audio, video tips, speaking engagements and events.

Oprah is famous for saying: “Live Your Best Life.”  Golf gave me that – and so much more. Now I want to help as many people as possible learn to enjoy playing golf and use lessons from the golf course to succeed in all areas their lives!

Be Positive - Live Positive - Golf Positive!

Monday, May 25, 2015

Go With Your Gut

Often in life, a voice inside begs you to listen. Have you ever had that silent voice nudge you to “bring the umbrella” or “double-check the door” or “call your mother” but you ignored it?  Later in the day, you say, “I knew I should have done that. I had a feeling in my gut.”
This happens with life-changing events and decisions. Years ago, I would listen to motivational speakers in person, on cassettes (no downloads then) or on television, and I loved it. I truly felt motivated!  I also could feel the excitement bubbling up inside and hear my inner voice saying that I would like to be that person. I could see myself in front of a crowd of people, sharing inspirational stories, making them laugh (hoping not at me, just at my jokes) and reaching into their emotions, recognizing their fears and overcoming barriers by encouraging them to excel and succeed in life. “I can do that,” I thought.  Then it hit me. I realized that I must succeed at  something before I could tell others how to be successful.  

As I look at my life, I realize that I now have life experience. Well, OK, I’ll say it. I’m older now, and I have some success under my belt, so it’s time to acknowledge that feeling in my gut and listen to that inner voice that has stayed with me all these years.  
Throughout my career as a golf professional, I’ve had the opportunity to be a master of ceremonies, a keynote speaker, a speaker at Ladies Professional Golf Association national seminars and more.  I’ve always loved the opportunity to enlighten others.

Not every speech has gone perfectly.  When I was preparing for my gig as the Master of Ceremonies at the LPGA Southeast Section Awards, I got a great idea from Billy Crystal after seeing his opening as the host of the Oscars. I decided to use the song “Hello Dolly” but changed the words to include all of the award winners’ names and titles.  I must say: It was a cute song!  I started the evening by mentioning Billy Crystal and the Oscars, and then began my song. The smiling faces in the crowd gave me great feedback.  Then I forgot the words. Oh boy!  I just stopped and said, “I forgot the words. But don’t worry. I have them right here, so I’ll just start over.”  I heard a gal at the front table say, “That’s embarrassing!” I started the song again and completed it perfectly. The crowd clapped. They seemed enthusiastic. But I will never know if they were applauding my take on the Oscars. They could have just been relieved that I didn’t screw it up again. 

On a positive note, as the keynote speaker of an Executive Women’s Golf Association event, the theme was saying “Yes” to opportunities in life.  I was thrilled when I finished my speech. The audience gave me a standing ovation. The best part about the speech came months later: A woman who had been in the audience told me that an opportunity came along at work that she would have normally declined. But she had remembered my speech and said “yes.”  She was thankful for the encouragement. 

Be Positive, Live Positive, Golf Positive
C.O.R.E Triumph!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Go with the Flow, Lydia Ko

Lydia Ko, LPGA Tour Star

Another great birthday for Lydia Ko!  Two days after her 18th birthday she defended her title at the Swinging Skirts LPGA Classic, for her seventh LPGA Tour victory.  
Lydia became the No. 1 ranked woman professional golfer on 2 February 2015 at age 17, making her the youngest player of either gender to be ranked No. 1 in professional golf.[2][3]
Born in Seoul, South Korea, she had been the top-ranked woman amateur golfer in the world for 130 weeks[4] when she announced she was turning professional on 23 October 2013. She became the youngest person ever to win a professional golf tour event[5] and youngest person ever to win an LPGA Tour event.[6
We can all learn so much from Lydia!  She just goes with the flow on the golf course.  The next time you get out to the golf course think of Lydia and go with the flow. Let go of distractions and stay focussed on one shot at a time!
You may be thinking, "Debbie, she's only 18 years old and she doesn't have all of life's stressors that I experience everyday!"  This is true, she is just a teenager but Lydia has other demands in her world; the media, fame, pressure situations to win millions of dollars as she plays and more!  In April 2014, Ko was named as one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people, now that's a big responsibility!  In the article, eight-time LPGA Tour Player of the Year Annika Sörenstam said Ko was "exceptionally talented, mature beyond her years and well liked by golf fans and competitors alike. 
Here is the key, once you step onto the first tee, let go of the rest or your life; it will be there when you walk off the last hole.  Nancy Lopez explained that when she stepped inside the ropes her only focus was playing golf.  When she stepped outside the ropes her life of family, children, media and more was there waiting for her.  Learn from the best and stay in the moment!  If you find yourself wandering, just gentle bring yourself back and focus!  Staying fully absorbed in every moment will make a positive influence on your entire life!

Be Positive, Live Positive, Golf Positive

Friday, March 20, 2015

Golf and the Game of Life

During a fun weekend with my family in Atlantic City, an idea for a new business popped into my head. I literally woke up, saying, “I’ve got it!” I quickly found a pen and a piece of paper and started scribbling, including the name “Golf-Positive” and notes for the chapters of a book.

Something big was bubbling up from all the laughter during that family getaway. Call it the perfect brainstorm: We all started talking about how the book could have one chapter with a golf lesson and the next about a positive mindset. “Golf-Positive, A Guide to Perspective” was one of the ideas for the book’s title.

I shared my favorite new quote with everyone: “An optimist figures that taking a step backward after having taken a step forward is not a disaster. It’s a cha-cha.” One of the chapters could be called “Cha-Cha.” Maybe even “Chi Chi,” a play on the great Chi Chi Rodriguez. More ideas flowed and my list of “things to do” grew ... register the name Golf-Positive, start an LLC, create a logo, design a website (well, hire someone to do that) and build content, write a book proposal, plan a social media strategy. Oh yeah, I can’t forget: Write a business plan. After all, what is Golf-Positive?

Defining “Golf–Positive” and its mission took a bit of time and thought. Golf is taught as a sport for life. It was important to consider the breadth of the game as well as the ideal attitude. Golf is a metaphor for life. The game challenges us with hazards, bunkers, hills, roughs and out of bounds. There are penalties. To play well, we must learn to handle the emotions of the highs of amazing execution and success as well as the lows of missed shots and lost balls. It’s important to “tee” yourself up for success, to think and plan your next move, and then follow through. And of course, you need to keep moving in the direction of your goal. Staying in a good frame of mind makes the entire journey more enjoyable and more successful.

After years of experience and learning, I teach a 4-step plan for success, CORE Triumph! It's a formula that is proven, so I'm thrilled to teach it to anyone who has a goal they want to achieve, on or off the golf course!

Fast forward from that Atlantic City weekend: I have a registered trademark for Golf-Positive, I formed an LLC and bought the domain names,, and I hired an amazing motivational speaker to teach me how to make my presentations even better. I have a website and many social media forums! The corporate outings and speaking opportunities keep arising.

Creating the logo did take some time. I described the concept of Golf-Positive to a graphic artist with whom I had worked in the past. I wanted the logo to visually pop with the essence of Golf- Positive. Finally it came to me: Make the “o” in golf a golf ball and have it falling into the hole, which is the “o” in positive! That says it all ... setting your goal, following through and winning.
I can almost hear the sound bottom of the cup.

 I have sat in audiences listening to motivational speakers with this inner voice telling me that I’m supposed to be that person someday. It happened for the first time about 25 years ago, but I knew that I needed to have a success story to share before I could teach others how to succeed. I had to walk the walk before I could talk the talk. Well, this is the moment. Golf-Positive is in full swing!

Live Positive - Be Positive - Golf Positive

Friday, February 20, 2015

Remembering Rhonda Glenn: Making Golf History On TV And By The Book

Rhonda Glenn didn’t set out to make golf history. She just wanted the job. 
When she died on Feb. 12 at age 68 after a long fight with cancer, the blitz of news coverage made it clear: Rhonda Glenn would be remembered for much more than her winning ways on the links. In 1981, at the age of 34, she became the first female anchor on ESPN. She also wrote the book on women’s golf: “The Illustrated History of Women’s Golf” (Taylor Trade Publishing: 1991). It won the USGA International Book Award in 1992.( )

 Here’s how Rhonda saw her groundbreaking career on TV, according to ESPN:

 “The fact that I was on what you would call the ‘cutting edge’ really didn’t make an impact on me,” said Glenn, who left ESPN after two years and worked in communications for the United States Golf Association (USGA) since 1996. “It wasn’t something I strived for. I never wanted to be the first, I just wanted the job.”

 My most cherished memory of  Rhonda goes back to the early 1990s, when I met her at a golf tournament where she was the keynote speaker. She truly captured the mood of the moment and inspired the audience. I still remember her warm and generous smile as she signed my copy of her book.

 That extraordinary book came in handy when I was asked to be the master of ceremonies at an LPGA awards dinner. The committee decided that I would talk about the history of women’s golf, beginning with Mary Queen of Scots (1542-1587). Oh, how the queen loved to play golf. I turned to Rhonda’s book to get inspiration for my remarks. Fast forward to the event: I’m standing at the podium. As I spoke, bagpipes began to play from a spot just outside the room. The bagpipe players walked into the room just as I completed my last line:

 “The next time you are out on the golf course, look around. Maybe you, too, will hear the sound of bagpipes.”

 It was a very moving moment! I felt such gratitude for all the women who had paved the way for my career in women’s golf, and especially for Rhonda Glenn, for all of her research and writing to put together the inspiring story of the history of women’s golf.

 To repeat, Rhonda was the first female anchor shortly after ESPN launched. She blazed the trail for women to take the microphone and get respect as experts on sports. She went on to become a golf commentator for ABC for 16 years. After she left broadcast news, Rhonda worked for the USGA as manager of their media operations for 17 years.

Rhonda was a close friend of Mickey Wright, a member of the World Golf Hall of Fame, who turned 80 on Valentine’s Day. Rhonda played a major role in creating the Mickey Wright Room at the USGA Museum in Far Hills, New Jersey. As the story goes, she persuaded Mickey to part with some of her memorabilia for display in the museum.

 The day after Rhonda died, Beth Ann Nichols, the senior writer for GolfWeek, sent out this tribute on Twitter ( ):

 @GolfweekNichols – Beth Ann Nichols: "Rhonda was the best interviewer and TV newscaster because she did her homework better than anyone.” – Mickey Wright on Rhonda Glenn  5:11 PM - 13 Feb 2015

 Rhonda’s final work was with golf legend Nancy Lopez as they wrote Nancy’s autobiography. Here is a glimpse from Rhonda’s interview with Nancy in December 2012 ( ):

 “Dressed casually in a white shirt and white shorts, Lopez, 55, glides into her living room, as regal and graceful as when golf writer Gordon White of The New York Times dubbed  her “the Spanish Queen” some 35 years ago.” 

 Rhonda competed in 12 USGA championships, a point noted by Ann Guiderson, executive director of the Colorado Women’s Golf Association, in her online tribute. At the age of 6, Rhonda began playing golf, according to a profile of her by Lisa D. Mickey published in May 2013 by The New York Times. The story’s headline, “Giving Voice to Women’s Game,” recognized Rhonda’s lasting gift to women’s golf with her love of the sport and its history.  ( )
 Rhonda’s smile, as sunny as her native Florida, and her crown of short blonde curls were everywhere again when the sad news broke that she was gone. Writer Andy Hall of ESPNFrontRow brought back Rhonda’s voice with this quote:   

“They say I’ve really been with the USGA for 49 years,” said Glenn, who has written eight books on golf. “I’ve loved the USGA since I played in the girl’s junior in 1963.

“Because of my father and mother I had a great respect for the history of the game so it was just natural,” she said. “It’s like they say, find something you like to do and make a career out of it, and I’ve been very fortunate to be able to do that.”

That’s a lovely lesson from Rhonda’s life: “Find something you like to do and make a career out of it … “ 

So many in the sports world grieved at the news of Rhonda’s passing on Feb. 12. 

 “Today we lost a wonderful passionate person from the game of golf. Rhonda Glenn became even a better friend after working with her for the past 2 years on my autobiography. She was one super lady. I cried many tears today, because we finished my book and she didn't get to see it in print. God bless you Rhonda. You will be missed!” – Nancy Lopez Golf Facebook page ( )

 I’m sad that Rhonda’s dance on earth – and her time on the links - were cut way too short. But Rhonda was such a genuine, kind and generous soul. Her amazing talent, combined with her passion for life, people and the game of golf, will live on in our memories.  I will help keep Rhonda’s spirit alive in the game of golf – and the game of life –  by doing my best to represent all of her outstanding qualities through my work for Golf Positive!

It’s tee time, Rhonda. Here’s to you!  

Be Positive - Live Positive - Golf Positive

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

A New Round of Golf & Life

January, the first month of the new year!  It's like starting a round of golf!
I'm sure you feel the same as I do when I'm on my way to the golf to play, excited about the possibility of a great round of golf!  You start at even par again ... a clean slate!

How are you doing so far in your new year?  One of my goals for this year is to read more books!  I recently read that Mark Zuckerberg, Chairman and CEO of Facebook, set the same goal for 2015!!  He may not have the "Oprah Effect" on reading, but I'm sure many will follow his book recommendations!!  I'm at even par on my goal as I have finished one book this month.  Now some of you veracious readers may laugh that my plan is to complete only one book per month!  I do enjoy reading, I just haven't made the time for it in the past.  Well, I would read on vacation.  Since I don't vacation every month, I will start to make the time in my daily life!

How are you doing with your 2015 goals?  Maybe you have exceeded your goal and made a "birdie" for the month of Jan.  Congratulations on a fantastic start!!  If you made a bogey or double bogey, meaning to you didn't followthrough with your plan,  it's ok, restart!!

Similar to golf, a bad first hole, doesn't mean you will play a poor round of golf!!  Learn something and then move on!  You get to start over on each hole on the golf course and in life, each new day is an opportunity!

Make it an extraordinary year by continuing to reach for your dreams, both on and off the golf course!

Be positive, live positive, Golf Positive!!