Recently I discovered the story of an inspiring man, Dan McLaughlin from Portland Oregon. On his 30th birthday he quit his job to become his own living experiment – to see whether elite golfers are born or made. Dan is in the process of clocking up 10,000 hours of training under a professional coach – 6 hours per day, 6 days per week for 6 years – to see how far this takes him.
Now, it takes a certain type of person to be an elite sportsperson – at the highest level, often the difference comes down to mental ability and toughness. It remains to be seen how Dan goes in this regard, but what is obvious is that he does possess plenty of drive (sorry, golf pun), perseverance and guts. The funds for this experiment came from Dan saving $100,000 in a relatively short space of time by living very frugally and renting out rooms in his house. The money was originally meant for other purposes but proved very handy for his experiment. So he has the runs on the board for drive and perseverance at least!
The outcome? The experiment is ongoing – Dan’s 6 years will be up in late June 2015. He has stuck with it and as of July 2014, has a handicap of 3.3, which puts him in the top 4.5% of players in the US. (Anecdotally, a handicap of 2 is required for PGA consideration). I believe Dan is truly inspirational because he is pursuing a goal to its limits regardless of the outcome, and in his own words ‘has found success in the sincerity of the pursuit.’ Dan also said “I don’t think it can fail, because it’s not really about me or what ultimately happens with me. It’s about blazing a new path and kind of trying to change the way people see life’s possibilities” – and that is fabulous.
Check out Dan’s blog – thedanplan.com