Forbes – Leadership: Through Hard Work And Perseverance, Tiger Woods Rewrites His Narrative

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Last Sunday, Tiger Woods won his fifth masters title, his first masters in 14 years, and his first championship in 11 years. It has been a long 11 years for Woods, who has famously struggled. He suffers from back issues, and has undergone four back surgeries throughout his career, most recently in May 2017. Woods was found asleep at the wheel of his Mercedes a month later. He claimed it was “an unexpected reaction to prescribed medications,” and a toxicology test showed traces of five different drugs in his system. When Woods returned to the course in December of that year, he was ranked 1,199th in the world.

He has been in and out of surgery and in and out of rehab, and no one will forget the spectacular, scandalous public break up of his marriage and the drama that ensued in 2009. Sponsors like AT&T dropped him, but Nike has stood by Woods, insisting he was addressing his issues. He was the number 1 golfer in the world, considered a role model and the greatest golfer in a generation—and he fell from grace overnight. Since then his game unraveled due to physical ailments and lack of focus on the course. Fans and pundits were not sure he would ever be the same player. Especially in 2017 with his DUI and back surgery, it was hard to believe he would win another tournament. But then he won on Sunday.

He didn’t just come back from behind in the tournament (his first ever in a tournament), he came back from behind in his career. Woods had every excuse to retire, every reason to believe he would never win a championship again, every reason to believe no one cared if he competed. Many thought Woods he was a lost cause, that his story was done: he was a once in a generation golfer who ultimately could not overcome his demons and it cost him his career. But now that narrative has changed. His legacy will no longer be defined by his struggles, but by how he overcame them. Woods won on Sunday for one reason: he did not let anyone else dictate what he could and could not accomplish. He believed in himself and he simply did not give up.




Woods spent 11 years grappling with the injuries that plague him and the demons that haunt him, and on Sunday over a decade of worked paid off. It was a stirring example of an athlete not giving up on his life’s passion, in spite of surmounting evidence that he would never win another tournament. It is an inspiring example of a person who worked through their issues in the public eye, made progress in spite of them, picked themselves up when they failed and kept going. Most people would have given up. Most people would not keep chasing a dream for 11 years against such odds and after such blistering, embarrassing failures. It’s an example of what we’re capable of if we have grit, if we persevere, if we work hard and if we never, ever, ever give up. Woods is the case in point: people overwhelmingly wrote off his career, no one believed he could win another championship, but now he is poised for a second chapter.

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Tiger Woods smiles as he wears his green jacket after winning the Masters golf tournament Sunday, April 14, 2019, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum) photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

Last Sunday, Tiger Woods won his fifth masters title, his first masters in 14 years, and his first championship in 11 years. It has been a long 11 years for Woods, who has famously struggled. He suffers from back issues, and has undergone four back surgeries throughout his career, most recently in May 2017. Woods was found asleep at the wheel of his Mercedes a month later. He claimed it was “an unexpected reaction to prescribed medications,” and a toxicology test showed traces of five different drugs in his system. When Woods returned to the course in December of that year, he was ranked 1,199th in the world.


He has been in and out of surgery and in and out of rehab, and no one will forget the spectacular, scandalous public break up of his marriage and the drama that ensued in 2009. Sponsors like AT&T dropped him, but Nike has stood by Woods, insisting he was addressing his issues. He was the number 1 golfer in the world, considered a role model and the greatest golfer in a generation—and he fell from grace overnight. Since then his game unraveled due to physical ailments and lack of focus on the course. Fans and pundits were not sure he would ever be the same player. Especially in 2017 with his DUI and back surgery, it was hard to believe he would win another tournament. But then he won on Sunday.

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He didn’t just come back from behind in the tournament (his first ever in a tournament), he came back from behind in his career. Woods had every excuse to retire, every reason to believe he would never win a championship again, every reason to believe no one cared if he competed. Many thought Woods he was a lost cause, that his story was done: he was a once in a generation golfer who ultimately could not overcome his demons and it cost him his career. But now that narrative has changed. His legacy will no longer be defined by his struggles, but by how he overcame them. Woods won on Sunday for one reason: he did not let anyone else dictate what he could and could not accomplish. He believed in himself and he simply did not give up.






Woods spent 11 years grappling with the injuries that plague him and the demons that haunt him, and on Sunday over a decade of worked paid off. It was a stirring example of an athlete not giving up on his life’s passion, in spite of surmounting evidence that he would never win another tournament. It is an inspiring example of a person who worked through their issues in the public eye, made progress in spite of them, picked themselves up when they failed and kept going. Most people would have given up. Most people would not keep chasing a dream for 11 years against such odds and after such blistering, embarrassing failures. It’s an example of what we’re capable of if we have grit, if we persevere, if we work hard and if we never, ever, ever give up. Woods is the case in point: people overwhelmingly wrote off his career, no one believed he could win another championship, but now he is poised for a second chapter.

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Source: forbes.com

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