By Julia Boland
It is hard to believe that I am already half way through my rookie season on the Symetra LPGA tour. Time flies when you're having fun.
If I had to summarise in one word my experience but I would say 'learning'.
It's hard to believe that after staying amateur for so long and having been given wonderful professional and amateur experiences I still have so much to learn about this game.
I am learning on and off the course. I don't remember anyone telling me that I needed to be an international tax accountant, a visa lawyer, a manager and a player when I turned pro, but these are all roles that are required out here on tour.
Please don't think I am complaining though, as I am truly loving life and revelling in these new roles.
On the golf course I have had a solid start to my career. My statistics have been really encouraging and I have been working hard on my game.
The biggest difference in turning pro is the quality of field. One bad round knocks you out of contention and mental toughness is required to fight back for a chance at a top 20 finish.
Each week I can see improvements in game, and slowly but surely I am feeling more and more confident in my ability to play golf at the highest level. This week is the beginning of six events in a row, so be sure to follow my progress at www.symetratour.com. (You will notice that there are upwards of 6 Aussie out here on tour, and we are each making our mark- so stay tuned!)
A neat component of this tour is the driving between tournaments. In the last two months I have clocked 8,000 miles- having driven all the way from Texas through Canada and currently in New Hampshire.
Living in Texas for the past few years didn't give me an appreciation of just how beautiful America is. I have been really fortunate to have had some bucket list experiences such as the Indi 500 race, and seeing Niagara Falls.
Working hard at my game has really made me appreciative of the days that I do have off as a tourist!
With 9 events left for the season I am about ten spots out of my LPGA card. It's really open to anyone who brings their game for the later half of the season.
As I look at professionals who have made it in this game they share certain traits.
While they don't all hit draws, or they don't all have text book swings, from what I can see they all really really hate losing and they are willing to work hard so that they can win as often as possible.
Whilst he isn't a golfer I am sure we can all learn from Roger Federer. His recent Wimbledon victory was courageous in so many ways. But the thing that I loved most about it was his undying belief in himself.
I am sure a weaker player might have given up after a shattering loss to Nadal a few years ago, but Federer seems to have an ability to learn from past 'failures' and not allow his confidence or work ethic to be hurt.
These are the characteristics that I hope to continue to harness as I move forward this season, and indeed throughout the rest of my career.
Until next time good golfing!
Julia Boland is a former National Squad member and current member of Golf Australia's Rookie Professional Program.