Monday, December 12, 2011


“When meeting people from a foreign culture, offer a few gifts that reflect your interests as a gesture of friendship. Better yet, give things you’ve created yourself. Also, explore their interests and their culture. Ultimately, the best way to forge a lasting friendship is to create something together. Whether it’s a meal, an art project or a spontaneous dance party, when you create something with others, you build a connection that lasts a lifetime.” – International Diplomacy Guidebook

That was the quote that sat on the big screen as we walked into Blueman Group last week. Needless to say, it sat with me, too. I loved the performance—it was moving and engaging and a thrilling treat—and I just kept coming back to this original quote. It’s what I try to do with the children in my program. It’s what I always talk about--- getting on their level. Listening. Being present. But the quote also put it into new words for me—creating something. Yes. Creating.
We create experiences, memories. We create a moment together. It’s not about the golf swing, it’s about the experience surrounding that moment. It’s about how we learn, the ways in which, in that classroom, we come together.
Getting on a child’s level isn’t about teaching them something. It’s not about imparting wisdom, projecting a learning system. It’s about sharing something. It’s an offering. It’s saying: “For this hour, this afternoon, I am yours. I will be completely present for you. I will offer you what I know in exchange for what you know, and we will make something together.”
The shared experience then becomes something they can be free in. Be themselves in. We have rules, of course we do, but because I communicate in their language--- because I get on their level--- they are free to really open up. To begin to internalize and understand in a way that works for them.
I always say I do not set out to teach golfers, I set out to teach the child. In the process, of course, the child teaches me. The child teaches me the way they learn. They teach me how to explore their own abilities with them--- what they need from a lesson, how they wish to move forward. By just being present, by offering, they instruct me on everything I need to know. It’s no wonder children keep coming back to the program. A love of golf develops from a love of the experience. From the love of the moment
Of course, The Blueman group was not referring to children. They were referring to diplomacy, to life. Try, in your interactions, to offer. Try to share. Instead of telling someone how you see it, try to listen to how they do. Hold space for them to express where they’re coming from. When you get on someone’s level, you open up the moment to be something bigger than the both of you. And that moment, that expansion, has the ability to last a lifetime.
Play in love,


John Graham said...


You truly have a special gift to do what you do. I doubt there are many coaches in this world that can see things the way you see them. I am so thankful that there are coaches like you in this world.

Great post and keep them coming.

Hope you're enjoying Twitter. :)


Kay Jeanquartier said...

Thanks for sharing Kate!

Anonymous said...

The quote was also foreshadowing. The blue man group fulfilled the quote with their show.