Dog days, better days
As you know, I’m a huuuuggggge dog lover.
I have three of them, and each one brings me so much joy, warmth and companionship when I’m home. We lounge together. We go on walks together. We play together. We do everything together!
I can’t imagine what my world would look like without Bubba, Lulu and Tiffany and the amazing bond I share with them.
My dogs are my best friends!
But … surviving the dog days of summer?
Well, that can be a different animal.
After celebrating Labor Day — and with fall coming soon! — I’m not quite ready to turn the page on summer quite yet.
I grew up in — and still live in — Texas, so trust me when I say I know all about the heat. Scorching-high temperatures and blazing-hot days are par for the course this time of year. It’s definitely not for everyone. When I was younger, going to the pool and running through the sprinklers were my favorite ways to cool down. Having fun in the sun are some of the fondest memories I have from my childhood.
In 2022, my summer has been a tad busier.
While the weather has been warmer than ever, I’ve been playing more golf than ever on the LPGA Tour. It’s definitely been a grind on so many fronts. Between practice, travel and competition, all while enduring desert-like conditions outside, the dog days of summer are truly living up to their name this season. I learned at a very early age how critical it was to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and healthy.
So, how have I persevered? It hasn’t always been easy, but I’ve tried really hard to keep a positive attitude so I don’t get burnt out with my super crazy schedule. Here are the steps I’ve taken — tips you can use in your own career! — to remain cool, calm and collected in my routine all sweltering summer long.
SINK OR SWIM
“Focus on my craft.”
That’s my mission.
Heading into this summer, I really concentrated on sticking to my strengths on the golf course and trusting my swing.
When I was a kid, summer was all about getting a break from school, hanging out with my family and swimming for hours. I still find time to relax and recharge during the week, but now I spend most of the summer training and competing. May, June, July and August are probably the most grueling months on the LPGA Tour. It’s one event after another, so it can be a roller coaster both mentally and physically.
But with some extra grit, poise and determination, I’ve managed to elevate my game to the next level. In July alone, I posted three top-20 performances, highlighted by tying for third at the Trust Women's Scottish Open. (On a side note, Scotland is an awesome place to visit! The sightseeing is simply beautiful.) Most of all, I’ve enjoyed putting my skills to the test and embracing the challenge of such a wonderful sport.
No matter what professional field you’re in, perfecting your craft is something you actually have complete control over. I was always taught effort isn’t optional. You owe it to yourself to give it 110% in everything in you do and make the most of your unique talents. When I eventually reflect on this past summer, I’ll hang my hat on the fact that I’ve continued to fine-tune my approach and write my own story.
I’m dog-tired, but it’s been an incredible ride so far.
SOAK UP SUCCESS
I’ve always believed it’s vital to acknowledge your personal accomplishments and reward yourself for working so hard.
You have to live a little, right?
Back in June, I had my best finish at a major championship after placing in a tie for 15th at the U.S. Women’s Open. Don’t get me wrong, every tournament I qualify for and compete in means a great deal to me. It’s an honor and a privilege to participate on the LPGA Tour, so I never ever take this experience for granted. But there’s no question the bigger events on the biggest stages really get my juices flowing. With so much on the line, the extra pressure that I feel mounts with every shot, hole and round.
When I cracked the top 15 at U.S. Women's Open, a goal I set for myself, I was so happy and proud that I made sure to mark the special occasion. I didn’t get off to the hottest start after shooting a 74 on Thursday. But I never lost confidence in my game — and I never stopped battling (capped off by a 69 on Saturday to climb up the leaderboard). While I didn’t win the trophy, I did treat myself to a pretty stylish consolation prize. I bought a fancy designer purse I had my eye on but wanted to “earn” it so to speak.
Putting away money for tomorrow is no doubt a top priority, but recognizing the results I achieve today is worth every penny. That’s my rule of my thumb — cherish every moment along the way.
I’m not saying you have to break the bank on something extravagant when you get a promotion at work. I just think it’s OK to let your hair down! To me, splurging every now and then is just as important as saving.
We’re all human, we all have our passions and we all deserve to celebrate a job well done in some form or fashion.
Doggone it, life is too short!
More ways to “heat up” your savings:
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