Dr. Helen

The Authentic Swing

I just read Steven Pressfield’s new book The Authentic Swing: Notes from the Writing of a First Novel and found it to be well worth my time. It is actually a book about writing novels and he uses the metaphor of golf to teach readers how to use the rules of that game to apply to being a good writer and finding one’s voice. That said, since I have little interest in writing novels, I turned to the fascinating analogy of how golf applies to the personality. Golf is a game played by an individual where honesty, an ability to play the game alone without help (except maybe from one’s caddy) and an authentic swing are necessary to succeed. I always wondered why business men were always taking clients to play golf and now I understood: it is to assess how they play the game. Are they honest or are they a cheater like Bill Clinton? Do they quit easily or do they stick with it? Do they show up on time ready to play or show up late and complain? It’s a pretty smart way to get a snapshot of a potential hire’s work ethic and personality without a Rorschach and given that some pre-employment screening can potentially be illegal, golf can be a useful way to see how a potential employee approaches life and possibly, your business.