Last week was my annual golf trip with seven of my very best friends (including my father). Believe it or not, this year was number 17 driving down to Santee, South Carolina and playing (pretty much) nothing but golf.
The weather was just about perfect, reaching the mid 60s each day with bright sunshine. We played a total of 144 holes (nine on Wednesday, 36 on Thursday, 36 on Friday, 45 on Saturday and then 18 before heading back to Cleveland). Not a record by any means (my friend Chuck and I have actually played 72 holes in one day), but not too shabby.
And yes, my father, who turns 80 in July, played every hole with us. And yes, he scored better than us on most days as well.
Going into the trip, the guys were nice enough to agree to a “limited-phone sabbatical” on Saturday (in keeping with this idea of “electronics free Saturday“). This basically meant when we were on the golf course, we stayed off our devices.
But for some reason, the guys stayed off their phones more than usual this year each and every day. We easily talked more as a group than on any other golf trip (it did help that the NCAA Tournament was on, which made great conversation fodder).
On Saturday I was riding in the cart with my friend Jim. We discussed the idea of being “in the moment.” Talking with my friends. Enjoying the game of golf. Watching my father make par after par. I was indeed enjoying the moment.
It wasn’t too long ago that I would go on these golf trips and constantly check my phone for messages and emails. Sure, I was on the golf trip, but I wasn’t really allowing myself to be in the moment. In hindsight, I was doing my friends and my father a disservice by not being fully present with them.
I won’t make that mistake again. This year, I had my best time ever.
Every day I see more and more people get lost in their devices…in their email…in social media…while in the presence of their loved ones. Time is precious. What’s important is usually right in front of us.
Do what I did. Put the phone away and be in the moment…with your spouse, your child, your parent, your loved one. You won’t regret it.
The following was an excerpt from Joe’s newsletter. Only subscribers receive the full version.