Obama, Golf, And Our Warped View of Downtime


We live in messed up world. It’s one crisis after the next. People are dying. Nations are collapsing. Evil is advancing. And Obama plays golf.

It’s easy to criticize. Does he really have time for that? Shouldn’t he be focusing all his time and energy on fixing things? Isn’t a leisurely activity like that irresponsible, especially for the president?

I liked this article’s response.

Why? Because any self-aware, emotionally intelligent leader knows that you don’t have time NOT to rest. No one, including the president, is a machine, and no one, including you, does their best work on E.

You see, the more energy your work takes from you, the more energy you need to replenish. There’s a proportionality that we ignore at our own peril. And without a doubt, being the President of the United States has got to be one of the most demanding jobs out there.

Too much golf? Give me a break.

But ultimately, this isn’t about Obama or golf. It’s about you and me and this crazy culture we live in which keeps insisting that more is better and less is worse until at last we succumb to the lie, even as our souls and bodies beg us to slow down.

All this reminds me of that famous line attributed to Martin Luther,

“I have so much to do that if I didn’t spend at least three hours a day in prayer I would never get it all done.”

There is a counterintuitive nature to productivity. In the same way that more prayer can equal more results, more downtime can do the same. And in the rare event that it doesn’t, you are still a person worth taking care of, not a cog in a wheel.

What are you doing on a regular basis to replenish your energy?


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