Howard: The game of tennis a great way to balance life out
Most of the time in this column I try to be upbeat, informative, knowledgeable, and progressive toward life - especially with the aspect of tennis in mind. That particular game has given me a lot of sanity in its own way as well as a living of sorts. It’s been there for me through some rough patches.
All of us have those moments where we certainly scratch our head and wonder what it’s really all about, feel overwhelmed, and ponder how we want the balance of our lives to play out, even when things are somewhat orderly.
Growing up, birth order, parents’ expectations, your own expectations, finding who you are - what you want to do, your path. Getting through school, sports, teachers/coaches/bosses, personalities, dating, what you will become as an adult and thinking the world is yours. A career, marriage, kids. Surviving and then wanting more. Career moves, relationship challenges, success and crisis times.
One thing’s for sure, time never stops very long to just let you smell the roses.
Helping your kids get through their early years, high school, college or whatever, and then careers. Grandkids come along and then you get to decide what your role you play with them.
Your parents/relatives get older, have problems and you help them till they’re gone. You may get to deal with a long illness, dementia, even bring them into your home if necessary. And you begin the process of thinking how you don’t want to become a burden to your own children and what you can do to alleviate that.
You try to do your best with the people you work with and for. “Give more than you take.”
Positive suggestions are sometimes not taken as such. Life goes on and you decide you can only go so far on some fronts.
You branch into businesses where the rug can’t be pulled out from under you so easily.
Your own expectations may be the death of you and certainly a strain on relationships.
You wonder why being the best is so important to you. Was it the older brother who excelled in everything that still pushes you today? Was it your father who one time mentioned that maybe you should go to vocational school instead of college? Why do these things stick in your head?
You read and believe in the book “Think and Grow Rich”. Rich in many ways, not just making money. You are surrounded by so many people who have achieved so much - is that your motivation? You continue to push yourself outside your comfort zone.
Happiness is a moment - contentment is a way of life. Tackle the hard things first then enjoy the rest of your day. Don’t put off what you know you need to do, it’ll just weigh on you. Try to bring out the best in others, and if you don’t have anything good to say…..go scream out away from everyone else.
And isn’t it strange that getting a high ranking in singles and doubles in my age category is still important to me. I was happy to hear that Allen Fox PH.D. says we’re just wired that way otherwise it really doesn’t make that much sense.
As I write this, tomorrow is Monday - and life will continue to challenge us all.
So keep your chin up, a smile on your face and remember when life is getting you down, “This too will pass.”
Chris Howard is a local USPTA Tennis Professional with over 45 years in the racquet and fitness industry. He can be reached at 928-642-6775 or firstname.lastname@example.org.