*Dear Dychey is Paddy Power’s Agony Aunt column. Any apparent resemblance to any figures in sport is purely coincidental.
Just a matter of days ago I experienced the greatest moment in my entire career – and already I’m reduced to a panicking mess.
See, I had it pretty great for about 15 years. In fact, I was the dogs b*llocks – and I made the most of it.
If there was a cocktail waitress from Sawgrass to Pebble Beach I hadn’t chatted up she must’ve been mute.
And then it all fell apart.
Even now when I drive past a fire hydrant I get flashbacks. I lost my wife, my kids, and most importantly, my ineffable ability to glide to victory on the PGA Tour, when I was exposed publicly as the emotionless husk of human being that I’d been all along.
The meltdown in my personal life hit me physically too – well, that and the dispensary-worth of “supplements” I was taking.
But I’ve fought back from the brink to get on top once more and now everyone loves me again!
People are so dumb.
Already, though, I feel temptations tapping away like the frustrated cleaning staff of a five-star hotel when you’re recovering from another all-night bender.
On the night of the Masters win, Rory forced a pint of Guinness on me and straight away it was 2005 all over again.
How do I cope with my second flush of success?
Dr Dychey says:
The game of golf is a cruel mistress. Fortunes flow like the tousled top of fairway rough – how many pitching wedges have I creased into right-angled scrap iron when the ball has rolled the wrong way.
And by “rolled wrong way”, I mean “leapt out through the car park gates as it bounced off the tarmac”.
At Millwall, we had a golf society, though leaving the course without having at least one of my clubs nicked was about as much success as I enjoyed there.
But the fluctuations of fate are essential to being a competitor in any sport – it’s just not normal to win all the time!
At least that’s what I tell the board when we’re going through a rough patch.
Losing builds character. From what I hear, your father expected you to perform superhuman feats from a very young age – smashing balls huge distances, travelling outrageous distances for competitions, lifting the occasional crashed vehicle off the road with your bare hands – maybe that was Superman’s da?
Anyway, there were unreasonable expectations from your old man and, somehow, you managed to meet them way into your adult life, but at the expense of developing your personality beyond winning at golf.
And then it just seeped out in destructive behaviour.
To keep those urges in check, you’ve got to keep reminding yourself that the highs can’t be too high, and the lows too low. You’ve got to find something you’re really terrible at – something that won’t ruin your relationships with those around you – playing the drums, line-dancing, model-building, bird-watching (ed: the feathered kind, cheeky) and just revel in your cluelessness.
Make a racket, fall over, glue all the pieces together, fall asleep through boredom, just enjoy being sh*te at something that doesn’t matter.
It’s how I treat the Burnley job while I focus on my true calling as a consultant to the world’s greatest sporting talents.