Think of someone that’s the best at what they do. There’s this intangible, the X-Factor, which separates them from the rest. Right?

I have this love-hate relationship with Tiger Woods. Between his brilliance on the course, and the stupid choices he’s made in his personal life, I’m torn whether or not I want him to be in contention or miss the cut. Tiger Woods winner

These days, I’m back in admiration mode. Why?  Despite all of his achievements as a professional golfer, 77 tour wins to date, he has this insatiable hunger to improve his craft. He stays curious.

Tiger has changed his swing three times since turning pro in 1996.

After four wins in 1997, including winning his first major, The Masters by an unprecedented 12 shots, he asked coach Butch Harmon to tinker with his swing.

Winning doesn’t mean you can’t begin again.

After winning another 32 tournaments, including seven more majors, Tiger asked Harmon to oversee another swing change in 2002. The coach disagreed. Woods started honing his skills by himself. Butch never coached him again.

In 2003, Tiger hired Hank Haney, a teaching professional who has taught hundreds of touring pros, to change his swing a second time in his career.

Under Haney, Tiger won another 36 or so tournaments including six majors. Winning doesn’t mean you can’t begin again.

On November 27, 2009, the wheels came off Tiger Woods’s life. He crashed his Cadillac Escalade SUV into a fire hydrant and news trickled out he was unfaithful to his beautiful wife Elin a dozen times.

In 2010 he hired Sean Foley, another coach, to tweak his swing again for a third time. Winning doesn’t mean you can’t begin again.

It would have been very easy for Tiger to give up. He had 71 wins, including 14 majors, and lots of cake in the bank. He was publicly humiliated due to his own indiscretions. Plus, he underwent ACL reconstructive surgery.

He could have coasted, but he didn’t. In spite of all the obstacles, he wanted to claw his way back to the top. Winning doesn’t mean you can’t begin again.

For the next several years, I rooted against Tiger. I cheered when his tee shot hooked into the woods. I screamed with enthusiasm if he put an iron in the ground. I channeled my karma to have him miss every putt.

Then, sometime during 2012, my attitude towards Tiger did a 180. I started pulling for him again. Albeit, even though I find the decisions he made in his personal life, reprehensible. I, like most, love a comeback story.

What I admire about Tiger is I’ve never witnessed anyone, that has so much fun taking his game to a level that’s unthinkable to the rest of his peers. He just wants it more.

Woods was the number one in the world for 623 weeks. Last week, Tiger again became the number one golfer in the world, having not being on top for the last 29 months.

The day you think you know it all, is the day you stop learning. 

How about YOU?

  • Are you a leader who thinks they know everything? Get curious. 
  • You received a promotion and are on top of the world. Time to get curious.
  • You’ve reached a plateau and life is boring. Become curious.
  • You’re known for your brilliance. Great. Put on your curiosity hat.

A few months ago, I was selected by Coach University, one of the premier coaching schools in the world, to go through their Teleclass Leader training. The students who successfully complete the course will be eligible to lead training classes at CoachU.

The reason I put my name in the hat is I’m curious.

I’ve taken hundreds of hours of coach training. Coached hundreds of clients in a half dozen countries. Read numerous books on coaching. I still have a mindset that says:

I never feel I’m totally qualified to do what I do.

If you’re at the top of your game and want to set an example, do what great leaders do and Model The Way. Hit the drawing board and learn something new. Take a class, read a book, attend a seminar, etc.

Winning doesn’t mean you can’t begin again.

This week, what will you do to learn something new?

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