Jerry Lynch, author of the upcoming The Competitive Buddha, has a written a new blog on how focusing on slowing down will actually help you achieve your goals sooner- learn more here.


 Here is a short excerpt from my next book, due to arrive in Spring 2021. It is on PATIENCE AND ITS VALUE ON AND OFF THE COURT.

My new book, The Competitive Buddha, is now available for pre-order from a local bookstore near you or in hardcover from Amazon

In my selfish, impatient view, the rest of the world needs to catch up to me. It is also this perception that causes me unnecessary, endless suffering. Patience is the virtue I fail to master. And, what is worse, I want to have patience now and do not want to wait any longer. Surely you see the irony in this last sentence and it speaks to the gravity and urgency of my problem.

Well, I’m happy to tell you my level of self-compassion is helping me to be more patient each day, accepting most of those things that can annoy me in the present moment. I am feeling more peaceful and less anxious. I attribute this shift in consciousness to my daily meditation practice which helps me be more mindful of this issue and accept what is. It’s not like my impatience is permanently gone but I do feel good about how I can catch it early as it begins to appear. I take three deep breaths and remind myself how I’d rather be happy than right. Being aware of my impatience has been the key to managing it.

Patience is an important virtue for those of us in athletics. We want success and we want it now. We want to play more, earn more, get more and more and do not want to wait. This makes us tight, tense and tentative which in turn delays the changes of what we desire from occurring

As suggested in the opening quote, Buddhist thought teaches that all things come at the appropriate time. Patience is the ability to enjoy and immerse yourself in the process, the flow of life, as it assumes its own form and shape. I use the following story to demonstrate the importance of patience and mastery in sports:

An athlete went to her coach and asked how long it would take to develop into a world-class triathlete. He reassured her that if she trained properly, it would take four to five years to come into her own.Feeling frustrated and uneasy about this, she told him she didn’t want to wait that long. In an attempt to force the issue and arrive on the scene sooner, she asked how long it would take if she worked harder, faster and with more effort. Ten to twelve years was his reply.

This sports story, unfortunately is the rule not the exception with athletes. I experience this in my work constantly. It’s important that you don’t think of patience as the capacity to endure. Instead embrace it as an opportunity to be at peace and give yourself time to work toward your goal without time constraints as you enjoy the path of continual improvement. Remember the concept of KAIZEN in Part One: the slow, gradual process of consistent improvement. I like to ask athletes to recite this mantra when impatience is hindering their progress: Go Slower, Arrive Sooner.

Remember that in sports as in life, things occur not when you think they should but when they are supposed to, when the time is right. There is a natural flow to all things. Think for a moment about a race between the tortoise and the hare. Through the inner Kaizen-Buddha qualities of consistent, deliberate, steady slow movement, the tortoise arrives sooner than the faster, more spastic, fatigued hare.

Perhaps the strongest virtue displayed by Buddha Tiger Woods is his palpable patience, winning or losing, up or down. He is mindful of the nature of the game, one of continual cycles as you go through some periods of not being at the top of your game. Tiger embraces golf’s cyclical nature. He is a champion in high times as well as low. The Buddha knows the wisdom of steady, serene thoughts unaffected by the swings of life. For Tiger, the key to his success is patience, the calm and uncompromising enduring of inevitable change.

To help you get a sense of patience in action, consider a shift in your attitude as you contemplate the following about the ancient martial art, Tai Ji and invite others to join you:

Tai Ji practice is never in a rush to get someplace in the future. It is always in the present with the focus on the process. To experience this, wave your arms around the body slowly, feeling every detail of the joints throughout your arms, clicking into action, softly propelling the rippling and curvaceous motion. We call this powerful, graceful motion “Cloud Hands.” As you enjoy this Tai Ji way of waving your arms, you’ll find yourself slowing down, to savor this delicious and fun experience. You now have arrived at the place where you always want to be.

The Competitive Buddha

How to Up Your Game in Sports, Leadership and Life

Connect Spirituality to Sports. The Competitive Buddha is about mastery, leadership, and spirituality. Learn what you need to keep, what you need to discard, and what you need to add to your mental, emotional, and spiritual skill set as an athlete, coach, leader, parent, CEO, or any other performer in life. Understand how Buddhism can help you to be better prepared for sports and life, and how sports and life can teach you about Buddhism. Discover how people from all parts of the world have brought together the Buddha and athletics for greater fun, enjoyment, and pleasure during their performances. Dr. Jerry Lynch demonstrates how certain timeless core Buddha values inspire you to embrace and navigate unchartered waters, and understand the Buddha-mind and the Kobe Bryant Mamba Mentality.

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