Here’s the scenario – You’re playing the best golf of your life after 4 holes of golf. Then on the 5th hole you hit a Drive that you’re not 100% happy with, though it’s still in play and you accept it as being OK and it doesn’t bother you too much.
But apparently it bothers your golfing buddy enough that you didn’t hit it perfect because they look at you and say – “You know, you didn’t finish your swing on that shot as well as you have been on the first 4 holes. You really need to follow-through better.”
Now if you were a Player, you would just look at your Golfing Buddy, smile and say “Thank you for your advice”. And then instantly forget everything they just said to you. Though the Monkey would say – “Really? Is that what you saw? Did it look like I was not going all the way through? Was there anything else that you saw?”
And the funny, yet some could say – “sad” aspect of this conversation is the Golfer giving the advice could’ve just made double bogey on the last four holes to go 8 over par with 14 holes to go, yet you ignore their struggles and take their advice as being “The Gospel”.
That’s why we use the term Monkey
“Monkey See, Monkey Do”. Regardless of how you’re playing or who you’re playing with – Golfers are always listening and watching what other Golfers are doing. And as we’re watching and listening – we’re trying to find that ‘nugget of advice’, that ‘one Golf Tip that’ll do it for us’, we’re all looking for that ‘Secret’ that’ll instantly and magically transport our game to the next level.
Let me ask you this question –
You have $100,000 to invest in the stock market and you want some advice on what stocks to buy using this money. So you do a lot of research on who’s the best stock picker in the world. And you find one Stock Picker that over the last 7 years has made their clients a 100% return on their money. And you found another stock picker that over the same time period that has made their clients $0.
Whose advice would you take on where you should put your money?
So going back to listening to your Golfing Buddy who’s maybe a little better than you, maybe at the same level as you or maybe not as skilled as you – why would you (the over 100 Golfer) listen to a Golfer that hasn’t broken 100 yet themselves? Or why would you (the over 90 Golfer) listen to a Golfer that hasn’t broken 90 yet themselves? Or why would you (the over 80 Golfer) listen to a Golfer that hasn’t broken 80 yet themselves?
Going back to advice given to me from a very, very, let me add one more very, successful Man on Wall Street – who once told me as we we’re sitting down for lunch during a Golf Made Simple class – “Marc – Those who know, don’t tell. Those who don’t know, tell.”
He continued – “After 2 1/2 Days of your class, I’ve come to the conclusion that what we do on Wall Street and what you’re doing here is incredibily similar. On Wall Street the joke is that if you want to lose money, take financial advice from your friends that always have a ‘hot stock tip’. And I’m starting to understand that if I want to continually struggle with my Golf Game, I should continue to listen to all my friends and golfing companions that are struggling also with their games. Marc, your class has really opened my eyes to one of the major reasons my game hasn’t progressed over the years. I’ve been listening to the Monkeys for far too long!”
And I believe Michael was correct in his comparison. Think about it – If you’ve ever played with a very good Player (a 1, 2, 3 or 4 handicap) and struggled during that round, the Player will never give you advice such as – “It doesn’t look like you finished your swing” or “You’re picking up your head”. If anything, the only way to get advice from the Player is to look at them and ask them “Do you see anything wrong with my swing?” And the answer 9 out of 9 times will always be a very simplistic – “Just try to swing a little smoother” or “loosen up a little bit, you look a little tight”.
“Those that know, don’t tell. Those that don’t know, tell.”
So when was the last time you heard Warren Buffett (the world’s #1 Investor) ever give names of companies he’s buying? Or when was the last time you heard Peter Lynch (the guy who started and grew the world’s largest and most successful mutual fund in the world) give his stock picks?
“Those that know, don’t tell. Those that don’t know, tell” – applies just as much to golf. See for yourself and sacrifice one round of golf to watch and not participate in these Monkey conversations that are happening from the Driving Range to the 1st tee to the 18th green. And after each bit of advice that’s handed out like bananas to the Monkeys – observe to see how successful the next few shots are for the Golfer taking the advice.
Monkeys tell, Monkeys listen and Monkeys struggle
Players don’t tell, Players never listen and Players succeed
Go ahead, Be a Player!
Marc Solomon – Your Instructor For Life
Golf Made Simple!