Tuesday, April 15, 2014

"What the heck are 'Map Goals'?"

I've actually heard this question quite a bit. My "Map Goals" are an important piece of what has allowed me to be successful, so I think they deserve some explanation. The whole idea behind the term is an analogy. I believe in goal setting, but I don't believe that simply writing down some outcomes that I would like to achieve is really all that valuable. The important part is having a plan to reach those outcomes. So here's the analogy. My Outcome Goals are the destinations to which I am planning to get, and my Map Goals are the set of turn-by-turn directions I am going to follow to get me there. I understand that this is a dated analogy seeing as GPS has eliminated the need for maps, but I find the analogy very meaningful. If I want to get from point A to points B, C, and D, I feel that having a good route mapped out makes way more sense than wondering arbitrarily.

That is where the name comes from. My "Map Goals" are my specific plan to help me reach the destinations for which I am striving. The destinations that I have in my sights for 2014 are:

1.) The Fed-Ex Cup Playoffs
2.) A spot inside the top 100 players in the Official World Golf Rankings
3.) Victory on the PGA Tour
4.) The season-ending Tour Championship

Following the path laid out in my Map Goals will give me the greatest chance to reach these destinations. My Map Goals are structured as a weekly schedule that holds me accountable for being prepared in all areas of my career. I have certain requirements and drills that I have to finish each week in order to say that I am following my Map completely. (To see my Map Goals, click the tab labeled "2014 Goals" at the top of the home page.) To be perfectly honest, I have done a lousy job of sticking to my plan so far this year, but spending the last 10+ days at home with great weather has been exactly what I needed. I completed all of my Map Goals last week for the first time in a while, and not surprisingly, it was my best feeling week of practice all year. I am going to get back to following my "Map", and I know that I will progress steadily towards the Outcome Goals I have set.

I hope this helps to make the term "Map Goals" a littler clearer. I guess it's a bit of a strained analogy, but I like it. Whatever you want to call them, I am going to do a better job of completing my Map Goals each week, and I bet that gets me back on track towards my Outcome Goals.

Right now I am home in beautiful (actually cold and rainy right now) East Tennessee. I am the seventh alternate into this week's PGA Tour event, the RBC Heritage. That stinks, but I am very motivated to make sure this is the last year for a long a time that I don't play at Harbour Town. I'm ready to get after my preparation, and then hit a stretch where I go play some great golf. I am in the field for next week's Tour event in New Orleans, and I will be ready for it.

Thank you for keeping up with me and for your unwavering support. Come back for a practice update soon--I actually feel some exciting stuff happening in my game and I'll share it in the coming days!

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