Many stories have been written about Shane Lowy, the Offaly golfer who recently won the British Open. It was a remarkable achievement.
Whether you are into sports or not, there are so many life lessons that Shane Lowry can teach us all. That applies to non-sports people (my wife Carol is one — many explanations are required regularly), and to those of us who are on the opposite side of the spectrum, such as myself, who loves all sports.
Now back to Shane!
Dedication & Practice
Shane Lowry’s overnight success was years in the making. Thousands of hours of practice in hail, rain and shine were required to produce the performance of a lifetime in Royal Portrush.
I really admire athletes, musicians, scientists, or anyone who achieves significant breakthroughs from all their efforts. It really inspires others. The key word here is perseverance, it’s a self-discipline that is in short supply yet one of the best.
Inspiration & Modesty
Shane wondered would he be good enough to win the Open. This is a normal doubt he was able to park during the competition.
It’s his modesty that stands out — he’s a man from the heartlands of Ireland, Clara in County Offaly. Unlike many superstars whose ego is bigger than their ability, Shane Lowry is a passionate man grounded by his family and community.
He is a master golfer. And like all elite players, in tennis, golf, or athletics, Shane has a coach.
Now, this is important. I believe that we all need wise people in our lives. I believe that we need to have wise people in our children’s lives.
Sometimes, when the parental voice is rejected, the grandparent, uncle or aunt can be the wise person. Plug wise people in the different parts of your life – work, and relationships. Wisdom can keep us all grounded.
Family & Vulnerability
Shane Lowry spoke about his vulnerability, as he faced over 10,000 in his home village.
“You think this is what it’s all about... but it’s not.”
There were many nights when he cried himself to sleep, asking was he good enough to make it, wondering should he continue.
He would talk about how the Lowrys are an emotional family where “we would cry at anything”.
I love the fact that he can talk about the challenges and dark days, particularly on those days of greatest joy. His capacity to talk about vulnerability makes him even stronger, in my mind.
Yet, the night before the win when he was six shots ahead, there was great pressure. Would he throw it away with that pressure upon him?
He said on that night, regardless of what would happen, as long as his wife Wendy and two-year-old daughter Iris were waiting for him, that was what was important.
This is called perspective. Wouldn’t it be brilliant if we could bring perspective into our lives during the crunch times? This demonstrates that Shane Lowry has great emotional intelligence.
He has lifted the mood of the midlands, raised the mood of the nation and he deserves to savour his victory as the Open champion golfer.
Yet when Shane Lowry was asked what inspired him, it emerged it is his two sisters-in-law, Melissa who had a kidney transplant and her sister Alison who donated the kidney. There are so many true heroes in his life.
Shane Lowry — a class act.
Dr Eddie Murphy runs a psychological and counselling service in Portarlington, Co Laois. If you are organising a speaker or training for school, community, voluntary, sporting or work groups, call Dr Eddie on 087 1302899 or go to www.facebook.com/ dr.eddie.murphy.psychologist