Golf is a game that can never be mastered. Sure, skills can be developed, methods taught, and talent extrapolated, yet any combination of these factors will never be able to fully master the complexities of the game of golf. Yet, this game of golf is able to provide lessons that span across a multitude of areas.

To achieve various levels of success in golf there are certain traits that must be developed over time. Here are three of the many character traits that golf helps teach that are most beneficial to how we live our lives as a whole. If people can take these three traits, and implement them in their daily lives, I believe a drastic improvement will be noticeable in performance across the board.

1. Patience

Patience is definitely a virtue, especially when it comes to golf. Very few sports can have such devastating consequences for making the most minimal mistakes. One of the most common pieces of advice is to be sure not to follow one poor shot/decision with another. However, if you are not able to keep your emotions in check and lack the patience to move on from the prior mistake, you are likely doomed to compound this mistake.

As an instructor I have noticed that people’s approach to golf, is often similar to how they approach life. If someone is impatient and always in a rush in their everyday life, this same trait is displayed when they play a round of golf, or are on the lesson tee receiving instruction. If an instructor is able to help these students remain calm and composed throughout the lesson, that lesson in patience will hopefully reach the student’s other areas of life. Patience makes a student a better golf and a better person.

2. Perseverance

Golf is an intricate game that requires much effort to learn. Golf not only requires much effort, but often times, the results of a person’s efforts are not immediately visible (also why patience is so important).  Perseverance is defined as the ability, “to persist steadfastly in pursuit of an undertaking, task, journey or mission in spite of distraction, difficulty, obstacles or discouragement”.

Throughout the games of both golf and life, there are often difficulties, distractions, or various impediments that may possibly limit your desire and even ability to succeed. However, by persevering through the midst of struggle, a person is able to refine their skills and grow from the challenges being faced. An obstacle in your golf ability has similar characteristic to various obstacles in life. Persevere, and find success.

3. Honesty

Golf is the only game that I am aware of where you are not only asked to, but it is expected that a person call a penalty on themselves.  Honesty and integrity are at the heart of the game, and with society today being driven by earnings and not honesty; golf remains to hold these principles in the highest regard. What you are willing to do when no one is watching you in the woods when your ball is behind a tree stump, will likely carry on in your business dealings. Honesty is at the heart of golf, and hopefully at the heart of your being as well.

These are just three of the many traits that golf helps instill in its participants. Not only will these three traits help you improve your golf game, they may just improve your overall quality of life too!