After finishing my last post, I felt much better. The whole phenomenon of blogging is a little baffling to me. I'm not sure why sending out this message a bottle, so anyone (or no one) could read it is somehow more satisfying than writing in a private journal, but it is. (In case you don't want to read the long rambling post, recap is League Operator raises my skill level for arbitrary reasons and without warning, and as a result, I'll likely be benched for most of the season).
Well, with catharsis complete, I started processing the situation in a more constructive way ....as I thought more about the whole no pain, no gain process I remembered a quote from Trigger's blog post (see Pool is a Journey) about managing pain as a key component of success.
I looked up the whole article by Zig Ziglar, and this is the piece that caught my attention:
"Winners realize pain for the proper purpose is productive. You see, all of us will go through a lot of pain in life. Winners spend more of their time going through pain that aligns with their goals, their vision, or their purpose."
This has given me a lot to think about....How much of this pain is really aligned with my goals?
As I thought about that I realized, that none of the things that were upsetting me, were truly important to me. I enjoy the APA for social reasons, but even a year ago I was questioning if it was the right place to improve my pool. I do like the opportunities to compete nationally. But I've been to Nationals in 8-ball Team and 8-ball doubles twice. I've never been to Singles Nationals, but for whatever reason, my last performance in the Regionals has satisfied me for now, and I don't have a strong desire to try again. So, while these may have been goals at one time, right now, none of these are reasons for me to be concerned about being benched.
But what does excite me is improving my performance on the local women's regional 9-ball tour. And when I think about that, all of this seems easy. Less time in the APA means more time and money to play in 9-ball tournaments. There's also an alternative 8-ball league played on 9-footers that would actually be a better choice than APA. Things happen for a reason. Maybe this will be just enough to give me a push into some new and more challenging arenas.
So, when my League Operator said it was good for me to go up a skill level, he was right. Just not in the way he was thinking.
And on a less serious note, if you haven't already seen it, you have to check out Joe Rogan channeling Earl Strickland. Hilarious. And if you have seen it, you may just want to watch it again. I just did.