How to Become Great with Justin Poynter
In this episode:
Christina hosts a dear golf friend, Justin Poynter, an instructor for some of this century’s best golfers that attend the Champions Tour, the PGA Tour, and the LPGA Tour. Today we’re talking about what it takes to be great – and it’s not one single thing. Faith, action, mindset and more. Get ready for the takeaways!
Christina Lecuyer’s Bio:
Christina Lecuyer is a former Professional Golfer, a three-time reality television competitor, Confidence + Mindset Coach, Motivational Speaker, and Founder of Women with C.L.A.S.S. Mastermind, as well as Decide It’s Your Turn: Women’s Weekend. Christina’s mission in life is to empower people to fully live in their purpose, confidently and successfully!
Justin Poynter’s Bio:
Originally from Louisiana, Justin received his Executive MBA from Louisiana State University. After completing his collegiate baseball career, Justin focused on golf. He worked closely with Jim McLean as he managed the Jim McLean Golf Center – Texas for thirteen years. He also developed the Jim McLean Junior Academy. He is now a Royal Instructor for Crown Golf.
Resources and Links:
- Christina Lecuyer’s Website: https://christinalecuyer.com/
- Follow Us on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/bechristina/
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- Looking for Our Tweets?: https://twitter.com/bechristinaa
- View More Content on YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6LYaHUVwD9kkepqf1Zfcyg
- Hashtags: #justbe #worthaf #livealifeyoulove
- Justin Poynter’s Website: https://justinpoynter.com
- Follow Justin on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/justin_poyntergolf/
- Follow Crown Golf on Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/thecrowngolf/
- Learn more about Crown Golf via their website: https://thecrowngolf.com
If you enjoyed this episode, make sure and give us a five star rating on iTunes and leave us a comment about what you’d like us to talk about that will help you realize that at any moment, any day, you too can decide, it’s your turn!
Full Episode Transcript:
Christina: Y’all I’m so excited for today’s interview. Justin Poynter has been a friend, gosh, I don’t even know how long we’ve been friends now. It’s been a while, probably 12 to 13 years. I remember when we met like it was yesterday. I met you at the PGA golf show in Orlando, FL and we went for dinner that night.
And just the way that this man thinks, how he holds himself, how he connects with other human beings is probably one of the most instrumental people in my life, who has helped me get to where I am right now, whether he knows that or not. But just how he shows up in the world. And I know that this is definitely outside of your comfort zone to do so I’m so grateful that you’re here today now.
Justin: Thanks for having me. It’ll be great. Media is always interesting for me as you know.
Christina: I know, but you know what? You’re fantastic at it. You’re a one-take wonder, what were you telling me yesterday? Golf channel. You were doing something for the golf channel. It was minus five outside and you’re like, I’m going to be a one-take wonder, brother!
Justin: Positive mindset, big deal. So I had good people around me, Carlos, Chris Como, the whole staff. So, you know, it makes it easier.
Christina: Exactly. Well, for those who don’t know a little bit about Justin, you can find all those things in the show notes, but I would like you to kind of give us a brief introduction on who you are, what you do.
And don’t be shy because you’re actually quite a bad-ass, you’re just a very under the radar bad-ass.
Justin: So I am a golf instructor by trade. I’m a managing partner of Crown Golf. We started a company called Crown Golf.
We’re here in Arlington, Texas at the Texas Rangers Golf Club.
And there’s a group of us that have started it. We have a full-time junior Academy and for teachers and it’s just trying to develop champions, you know, our tagline. And what we’re truly trying to do is we’ve devoted our lives to developing champions, whether it’s on the course or off the course. And for me, I worked for Jim McClain for 13 years as a Director of Instruction in Texas, worked for him at Doral a little.
I’ve been able to teach a few players on every tour, Champions Tour, the PGA Tour, the LPGA Tour. So, I just guess the biggest thing for me is I think it’s just you’re trying to impact people. And Mr. Burke has been a big mentor and Jim McClain has been a big mentor. And I guess one of the things Mr. Burke always tells me, he says, you know, you want to make an impact on everyone’s life. So I think that’s what we’re trying to do through our business.
Christina: I love it because not everyone who listens to this podcast knows much about golf. And for those who don’t know, I played pro golf for a few years.
And in the beginning, when I first met Justin, I was still trying to play and Justin definitely took me under his wing, but I’ll be honest with you, you’re amazing at what you do, creating and developing champions around the world, in the golf industry, but I’ll be honest, nothing that I really got from you is golf involved and you know that to be true.
I did get lessons from you and if I want to, I could have become probably a much better player than I actually am by working with you.
But what I did get from you and which I think we are gonna really dive in today on is the development of a champion’s mind because in my personal opinion, I think there is not another person on the planet that I could think of that thinks the way that you think and creates an impact in people, without them even knowing what the hell you’re doing. And I think you’re honestly one of the most phenomenal people on the planet at it.
I always come back to the story when it really clicked with me. You told me from the beginning, from the beginning that I’ve known you, you’ve always told me how strong I am, how confident I am. You told me all of these things way before I fucking believed it to be true about myself, but I had no idea what you were actually doing when you were teaching me all of these things by literally brainwashing me into believing that, “Oh my God, I am super strong. I am super confident.” Tell me where this comes from and how did you learn how to do this?
Justin: Well, like for you, I just remember being around you the first time I met you. And people have presence, just have a presence, right?
So it doesn’t matter whether it’s what you call an aura or whatever it is, but from you, I just always felt like you were really confident and you were bold, strong. So as I sense those things, then you want people to understand what their strengths are. I think it’s very important in your life to know what you’re great at, right.
So, and if you’re not great at it, then you have to figure out how to be great at it. But if you already have it inside you, someone, as they recognize it in you and tell you. Then as you go, “Oh, he’s right.” And the more you believe it, then guess what happens, it becomes a confident aspect in your life.
So, and then you can use that.
And I was around a guy who played professional football, William Malinchak, actually. And he always talked to me about your life as sort of like you’re riding waves, right. So if you’re on top of the wave and everything’s going really well, life’s pretty easy.
But as soon as you make a mistake, you make a poor choice and you fall down, right. Then you keep getting beat up by the waves behind you. And it’s hard to get on top.
So what I figured in performance is that if you recognize in the athlete and it’s not just in performance, in daily life, if you recognize their strengths, and you’re able to put them on top of the wave early in their career, whether they have the skill, and I mean the technical development, like in golf, so to speak.
It’s like what you’re doing, making an impact on people around the world. You may have not known that you had it in you, but as I recognized it, then it was my job to make sure that you were aware.
So as to how I’ve done it, you’ve been to my house, you see a zillion of the books I’ve read and then I just sort of put together a philosophy of what I think it takes to be great, as being around great athletes.
I mean, Jason Day lives seven houses down to me. Romo’s been out at my house. I’ve had access to Carlos Ortiz, who’s on the PGA Tour.
I’ve had access to people who’ve been successful in sporting endeavors but also, you know, CEOs come to you for golf lessons, people who are really making impacts. People like you, I’m learning from you. I’m absorbing.
And I think one of the greatest things to do in life is that you absorb what you want from people – like from you, the boldness, the confidence, the intelligence I try to steal and emulate, would be the right word, those traits that you have and put them in my life and the traits that I don’t want from people, I just push them aside and don’t listen.
Christina: Oh, I love that so much because I think that, obviously you guys know that the whole purpose of this podcast is to help you decide it’s your turn and give you takeaways and what Justin just said there is so, so important. Every one of us surrounds ourselves with people, it may not be every single day that you see a Wall Street CEO, or a Tony Romo, but you are surrounded by people who are doing something that you want to do.
They have either the confidence, they have the mindset. They have the business strategy, they have the relationship, whatever it is.
And what Justin just said was you take what you want and leave what you don’t. I’ve told many times, I’ve been a part of Al-Anon because of a person in my family who has struggles with addiction.
And so that’s one of the slogans in Al-Anon, take what you want and leave what you don’t. And I just think that it’s so, so important for people to realize that they can actually do that. And I think that that is actually one of your biggest strengths is the fact that I never hear you say a negative comment.
You truly, when I ask you and I text message you and talk to you, how are you doing? I have only heard, “I am so freaking amazing. I’m so blessed. Life is amazing. Life is perfect!” Like in the beginning, I’ll be honest in the beginning. I was like, “This guy is full of shit”, but the thing is now is I know you believe it.
Justin: Well, living the dream would be what I generally tell you, so.
Christina: That’s true. I’ll give you a story. So I was sitting at Muirfield Village with Jack Nicholas and Carlos Ortiz. Nicholas walked up and you have a chance around someone. Great. You’re going to ask them a question.
So you have to ask questions to learn. So one of the biggest things in life is learning and to keep evolving.
So I asked Mr. Nicholas, I said, “Who’d you play your practice rounds with?”
He’s like, “Player Palmer, Burke, Hogan.”
And I go, “Well, what’d you learn from them?” And he looked at me and I’ll never forget. He looked at me and he goes, “I learned from every day from anyone I played with in every round.” And the thing was, he goes, “Whatever they did well, I took from them.”
And he goes, “Most people that I played with, I learned what not to do.” And he goes, “I didn’t do those things.” He goes, “I was aware enough during the actual competitive rounds to watch the other players and see what they were doing right and wrong.” And he goes, “I emulated what they did right. And what they did wrong” he goes, “I discard it.”
So, when you talk about it’s your turn, but you’ve also got to understand, you have to always be learning, it’s everyday. You’re going to walk in the grocery store. How does the person treat you? Do they make an impact on your life?
Is it a positive impact? And I’m just a big believer, if you ask the kids that are the players, they know they’re going to get the truth, they may not like it. Harry Truman’s one of my favorite quotes. It’s like, “I don’t give them hell. I just tell them the truth and they think it’s hell.”
I think that those are important things. You tell people the truth and people are going to be okay down the line, but everyone’s not treated equally, you’re treated fairly. You sorta earn what you get. And I think that if you’re positive with people, then guess who’s going to surround themselves around you. Positive people.
So that’s why, I enjoy being around you because you’re so positive and upbeat and you sort of attract those things.
Christina: Yeah. And I’m super grateful that you said that because I think it’s a hundred percent the truth. One of the things I preach all the time is you are who you surround yourself with.
A cool story that you told me one time that I think would be really cool to tell on the podcast is about the very successful PGA Tour pros that play that and how they allow someone to play with them or not.
Do you want to tell that story?
Justin: Yeah. So simple deal. So if you’re one of the best players in the world, they’ll play with anybody. It really doesn’t matter, right?
So Jason Day, Carlos Ortiz, all of these guys, if you want to play with them, they don’t mind. And I’ve been out at a Dallas National with Carlos, and there’ll be having these huge groups go off these money games.
And they’ll always ask Carlos, “Well, who do you wanna play with?” He goes, “I don’t care, just make sure he’s positive and make sure he’s upbeat.”
He goes, “I don’t want to be around someone who’s miserable.”
So if you play with them and you play at a relatively good pace and you’re positive and you’re upbeat and you’re not negative, they’ll play with you all the time.
It doesn’t matter the score you shoot, as long as you can keep up and keeping up means what your attitude is and then sort of the pace that they play. But the moment you go the other way, you’re negative and you’re throwing clubs, you’re bad mouthing other people, you’re out and you’ll never get back in.
They’re going to surround themselves with great personalities. I would say typically the best players, especially the very elite of elite, they just don’t want to be around people that are bringing them down.
Christina: Absolutely. And I think that that’s so, so important. So if you are listening to this and you want to achieve some sort of greatness in your life and you want to be around the best people, well then be the best people.
And if you are wanting to achieve greatness and right now you’re surrounding yourself with low vibe, non-high-vibe-bitching-about-life people, then you’ve got to figure out what the hell it is that you’re doing and what it is that you truly want. And one of the things that I think that you’re really good at is making really hard decisions and putting up some really good boundaries.
You don’t associate with people who are negative. You don’t associate with people who are bringing down the crowd.
And I think that that is one of the most important keys for so many of us in achieving greatness. Whether you’re going to say it or not, you are one of the greatest golf instructors there is.
And I believe it’s a lot to do with, obviously you are so technically smart, but you develop champions, in my personal opinion, the number one thing that you do the best is the mindset. In my personal opinion, that will literally take you farther than most talent will ever take you. And you do that by having such a strong mindset.
And you’re surrounded with the best, you’ve very much intentionally put yourself in a situation where people around you are not allowed to act negatively.
And that is one of the things that I think was a huge change for me is the fact that I knew if I wanted to be around you, who was great and your people who were great people, I wasn’t allowed to have a bullshit attitude. I wasn’t allowed to be negative.
And I think that that is so important that so many people don’t understand. And for you, it’s very much a simple decision.
Justin: Yeah. Well, just remember being critical to me is negative. You know, there’s a quote, it’s easy to be critical of people or something to that – don’t criticize, don’t complain, there were three things that he mentioned when I read his book.
And if you take it to heart, it’s like in this day and age, it’s easy to criticize because you’ve got social media and you can distance yourself from it, you can write it, you can type it, but you don’t have to say it to somebody.
There’s a lot of things that you’ll write and type and just fire it off without actually saying it to the person. The thing you have to understand is everyone in the world makes mistakes, right? So we’re all gonna do something wrong. You’ve gotta be forgiving of someone, but you also have to know what someone’s true intentions are. What’s in their heart.
And the thing is, if you’re going to be great at anything, there’s like, I have a list of things that I think that it takes to be great. And it doesn’t matter what you choose, whether it’s golf, whether it’s being great at impacting people like you do or if you’re going to be a great attorney, you’re going to be a great doctor.
There’s just a list of things that takes and the biggest thing that I would tell you is it doesn’t matter if you have a lot of money or a little money that if you start with the right attitude and the successful people want to be around you and they will help you.
And I will help anybody in golf if I think they have the right attitude. And it doesn’t matter if they’re a young instructor, an older instructor, but they have to do it for the purest of reasons and it is to impact other people.
If you’re truly devoted to developing champions and helping people, I think that is the best way you can impact someone in their life and it’s everything from faith to their heart, their mind, and shaping them into where, hey, they’re their best version of themselves so to speak.
Christina: I love that. And one thing that you brought up there that I really am excited to talk about is your faith, because I’ve said this time and time again to you, you’re one of the biggest people that helped me come into my faith and develop not only just faith, but a relationship with God.
And I think that you are one of my mentors when it comes to that. Have you always grown up in your faith or has there ever been a time in which that kind of struggled or have you always been strong in your faith? Tell us a little bit about that.
Justin: No, I think this will circle back to our previous conversations really. I think that in my life I grew up, my family went to church. My grandparents went to church. You go to church because your family takes you. Right.
So as you evolve, I went to play college baseball. I went to law school for a year. I went and got an MBA and as you’re going through your college years, you may not be as impacted as faith because you’re trying to find yourself.
And you might spend less time in church. And it’s funny, the church we went to when I was growing up, I just never thought it impacted me. Right. And it wasn’t because of rules, regulations. I just didn’t think the pastor, preacher, priest, whatever you want to call them, cause I went to a Catholic school, but I grew up in a Church of Christ and now when I was in Lake Charles, when I was growing up, I ended up going to a Trinity Baptist Church and then here, I’m at Colleyville First Baptist Church.
But you know, I think that whoever is speaking up there, if they’re really good at what they’re doing, they make an impact on you and they make it thoughtful. When you think of the definition of thought, it makes it’s full of thoughts. So they make you full of thought.
And I think that for, as I went through my life, I took my parents to Trinity Baptist Church. I said, “Look, this guy’s really good. He’s going to make you think about things.”
So they came and I was off in Miami working for Jim, living on Collins Avenue, which is in Miami Beach, A1A, the Vanilla Ice song reference very old, but they tell each one of my parents, they went into their Bible class and basically told them I want you to pray for somebody for a year.
So when I got moved here by Jim to run the Jim McClain – Texas, I started looking for churches and who knows why, Craig Etheridge is the pastor at First Colleyville and I’ve had lunches with him. And he sort of made an impact on me because I always was motivated when I left there.
So then you start surrounding yourself with people that are more like you and it’s not necessarily that they have the traits that you want. So every morning, Proverbs, my favorite book of the Bible. So I read Proverbs constantly. I try to read the Bible. The same man, Mr. William, told me to read the Bible every once a year. So I try and read the Bible every year. Right now every morning when I start my day, I listen to Pastor Rick Warren’s daily devotional. When I go to bed, I’m always trying to read a book that is faith-based so I try to get up and in my day, but I try to live my day that way.
So you’re trying to do your best all the time for Him, not for other people. And I had a buddy and I’m gonna read something to you. And I remember he told me and I thought it really was impactful. And he said in my mind, there are many ways to look at your life and none more important through the view of your own eyes.
So when I’m an old man, there won’t be a single regret in my mind for the choices I made and the chances I took, only the moments that I let slip away and only the times I wouldn’t pull the trigger, whether it’s in business or life or love life, we won’t talk personal, you have to put yourself out there and pull the trigger.
Right? So there aren’t any do-overs. Most people in life like to judge, condemn and point fingers and do so because they are inadequate or need to look down on the choices of others. So they aren’t forced to confront the opportunities that they’ve lost. So the discretion that you use in the choices that you make as a matter of personal choice and logical sensibilities.
And the thing that he sort of ended it with is “Don’t listen to other people. To be happy, you have to listen to yourself. And then when it comes to the world, they’re not trying to live a godly life. So you’re trying to live a godly life and if you know in your heart you’re trying to do the right thing. Always remember in life they’re only spectators, critics and players. Be a player.
Christina: Mm. I love that. Be a player in your own life. How many people do you know right now, how many people listening to this podcast are being spectators? I know far too many people who are being spectators in their life and I never want one day to not be a player in my own life.
I love that so much.
Justin: Yeah. It’s critics too. I think there’s as many critics as spectators.
Christina: Oh, that’s probably the truth. Hey, something that you said there, about that pastor being the thoughtful person, do you believe that you are trying to do that when you’re coaching your players?
Justin: All the time. So if you’re going to be great, and I think this is what you’re doing, what you’re doing really well for people is what you’re trying to do is make them think about who they are and what they want to be.
And you don’t give them necessarily their roadmap. But you open the road and you open their eyes. And at the end of the day, that person becomes an independent person. And that’s how I coach all of my players. They need to know their swing, they need to know how they play. They need to know how they’re successful.
And that was sort of what we did with Chris Como on the golf channel. We sort of explained how Carlos, what we’ve done over the years so that I don’t have to be at every event. It’s not that I don’t reinforce what he’s doing, but he’s developed into someone that is very independent. He’s the CEO of his game.
He’s the CEO of his life. I’m just a great sounding board for the truth that if you need, hey, a little motivation because motivation wanes, right? So that’s not always in there. I remember I asked Jason Day one time, while we’re on motivation, I asked him when he was number one player in the world, “So what’s different between you and the guys who are a hundred or below?”
And he goes, “When I’m not motivated, when I don’t want to go work out, when I don’t want to go practice, I do. The people that are below me, a hundred or below, they probably don’t.”
Christina: I love that so much. Yeah. It’s super true because I always say as a good coach, I’m never going to put something in you. My job is to give you the external perspective, number one, but keep you confident, motivated, consistent, and accountable to doing the things that you want to do.
And I a hundred percent agree with the motivation because there’s days where I am not motivated, but what I’ve done is create really good habits and promises to myself. So I know that my habit is going to be what gets me going to do the thing that I say that I want to do when I’m totally not motivated and I’m much rather sit on the fucking couch.
Justin: Yeah. I’ll give you one little thing to help you get motivated. So no matter what you want to do, your intrinsic and extrinsic motivation and people tell you when you reach the highest level, it takes more intrinsic motivation. I don’t necessarily agree.
So if there’s someone doing what you want to do and you want to be the best at it, you just flip to their Instagram, you flip to their social media and you see all the things they have that you don’t have and then you’ll end up in that gym.
You’ll end up on that tee hitting golf balls because if you want that green jacket, you can’t sit in your house. If you want to win the US Open trophy, if you want to be the best speaker in the world, look to see who they spoke to see who they are, see what they’ve done. And usually that’s enough for most people to get up because you’re like, man, he’s got it. She’s got it. I don’t have it.
And it bothers you enough if you have that competitive fire and those are the traits that you’re talking about, that you’ve instilled in your audience.
Christina: My question to you is the best you’ve worked with the best athletes in the world. What do you see in them from the beginning that perhaps, maybe even they don’t see that most people don’t have?
Justin: There’s sort of a list. Do you want the whole list?
Christina: Fuck yeah, I want the list. I want all the things.
Justin: I think the first thing is sometimes it’s genetic. I mean, you look at Michael Jordan, he had a gift like jumping. Here’s a better athlete than some. And the thing I would tell you is that sometimes, it doesn’t have to be physical either, it can be a mindset that they have that they may have been born with.
I remember I was having dinner with Tony Romo’s parents and I asked him, I said, “When he was young, did you know he was going to be good at something, really good?”
And they said, “Well, when he was in high school, he would wear out VCRs cause he would tape all the best quarterbacks and he would play the tape and rewind fast forward, rewind fast forward so much that he wore out like three or four VCRs, just watching and trying to emulate the greats on how they threw footballs.”
But I think sometimes there’s a genetic gift, not all the time, but sometimes.
I think passion, I think that’s a big one. You have to love what you do and you don’t love it all the time. But when you’re young, you’ve developed a passion. You either like to hit golf balls or whatever it is you choose to be great at. You actually love it a lot or you like it and as you get older, it’s a job, obviously but you have an innate passion. You can remember when you were younger, the passion you had for, I think they have a great trust in the improvement process.
It doesn’t matter what athlete I am around. They always think, “Oh, this is my way, the way I do things. It’s better than your way”. And I’m thinking, man, this guy is an average fitness coach. He’s an average trainer. He’s an average mental coach, but that’s not what they believe. So they have a lot of complete trust in their own improvement process.
And in that improvement process, they’re focused on themselves, right? So they sort of lost touch with the reality of who’s on the outside. They’re only internally focused on what they’re doing. And I think that’s where a lot of people get lost. I think it’s okay to motivate yourself externally, but I think that they’re really internally focused on getting better.
I think that they’re very good at controlling those things that make them better because at the end, right now in Dallas, we’re having terrible weather. You can’t control that. But as a golfer, if you want to hit balls, well, you can find a place indoors to hit golf balls, right? So you can control those things.
So they control what they can control.
The one big one we talked about earlier, they surround themselves with positive influences. They surround themselves with the best in what, and in their mind, they may be the best they may not be, but they’re positive. And they emulate that greatness from them.
So, a golfer doesn’t have to take it from golf. He could take it from, there’s a lot of players that are motivated by Kobe Bryant. There’s a lot of players motivated by Michael Jordan, Tiger Woods, they were motivated by their greatness. That’s another one. They’re very positive. There’s not very many great people who are negative.
Christina: Can you train yourself to be positive? Cause I truly look at you as one of the most positive people. Do you believe that you were inherently born with that or do you just train yourself so much that you’ve now literally brainwashed yourself in being one of the most positive people?
Justin: Both. I think my mother always tells me when I was young that I always expected things to work out. So, in Christianity, what do we call that? We call that faith. So I have faith that things will work out. But the flip side of that is you have to work hard. Right. So you have to work hard for your goals.
No one’s going to give it to you. And if you read the Bible, that’s what it tells you have to do. You have to have faith and faith is believing something to be true even though you can’t see it. And then working, I think that that’s next on my list is if we want to keep going down the list, but giving effort. Like, you go to the gym, you work out, you do all those things.
There’s times when you don’t want to be in the gym, but you still give that maximum effort. And there’s some times when your effort, you go through cycles, you work hard, you don’t work hard, but you’re still there. You’re giving the effort.
Christina: That is so key. The things that you said, because I always believe in, in everything.
You guys have been listening to this podcast now for however many months, you know that the one thing I always say is faith and action. Faith and action trump everything else, like faith and action, right? The two things that you need in order to decide it’s your turn. Let me tell you those are the two things that’ll make the biggest impact in your life.
Have the unwavering faith, I call it sometimes manifestation, believing something to be true, even before you can possibly see it. And action, small steps every single day, we forget how much we can accomplish over a week, a year, six years, ten years. I think it’s just so important that you’re saying that because that’s exactly what the best of the best have. They have faith and action.
Justin: Yeah. That is very true. Very true. Keep going.
Christina: Yeah. Keep going, tell me all the things we all want to know. What are the best athletes in the whole entire world, what do they possess?
Justin: Expect to win, your mindset, it goes back to you expecting to win, but if you don’t, you have to learn that. I think they do that really well.
And I think you got to love challenges. I think when adversity, it’s like, you know, Carlos is a good example. He lost his tour card. He came right out of college. He won three times, it was a web.com at the time. It’s now the Korn Ferry. He won three times. He was the player of the year.
He had gotten this tour card in Europe. It was easy. He got on the tour, he made it to the second stage of the FedEx Cup, the first year on tour. And it got easy and then he struggled because he didn’t work as hard. He’ll admit it to you and he lost his tour card, but that adversity of going back down, it was a great teacher for him at what he had to do.
And it’s changed his mindset. I think that a lot of people – it’s the Nick Saban. Everybody wants to be a success, but that people aren’t willing to do what it takes to be successful. So, I think what most people need to understand is it’s not always going to be easy. You talked about little steps, it’s like Jim laughed the other day. McClain called me and he goes, Hey. You’re on the Golf Channel. Now you’re an overnight success, 13 years later.
Christina: Exactly. Exactly. Did you see that meme? Speaking of that, one of the things that you said is about winners and did you see the most recent we’re taping this right near the Super Bowl time, and did you see that meme that came out where – I don’t know, you probably wouldn’t have seen it unless you, I shared it.
Jesse Itzler, he’s amazing. His wife, Sarah Blakely, owns Spanx. He’s created billions of companies. He owned a racehorse with Tom Brady and this race horse literally finished second, four or five times it ran.
And Jesse Itzler said Tom Brady had texted, “Hey bud, we bought this amazing horse. It’s finished second, congrats bro.” And Jesse said there was a long pause and he said, “That’s not a good horse because that horse needs to feel what it feels like to win, or it will never win.” Do you believe that that is true?
How do you get that? Tom Brady, we now know is the greatest athlete ever to exist, basically, the goat. He has to have the feeling of winning. Can you train someone to do that? What is your take on the winning mentality? Tiger back in the heyday of like, you know, 97, he believed every single solitary time he was stepping on the golf course he was going to win. What is that mentality? You’re around so many greats.
Justin: I call it delusional. Their self-belief and their confidence is so high that they’re delusional to some degree. I think in performance, you have to understand that’s acceptable. So you have to have such inner belief, self belief in yourself.
And it goes back to faith, we talked about. They have faith and belief in themselves and yeah, it truly exists because I’ll give you a Jason Day story.
Jason Day was playing Palmer in Bay Hill, right? The first two days. And he spent a lot of time with Tiger. He would go down to Tiger’s house, talk to Tiger.
They become good friends. And so he played the first two days and he’s just killing the field. He’s hitting a grade, he’s having no troubles, the golf season, he’s hitting it where he wants, he’s doing what he wants with the golf ball, shooting the scores he wants.
Day three he’s a little not as good, but he still has to lead. Right? So he’s going into the last day and he texted Tiger and he goes, “I’m not feeling as good.” And Tiger sent back three words: Find A Way. That was the three words. And so he went out and Jason said I was hitting it so bad. It was embarrassing.
You can go back and watch those videos on YouTube. He was up by one going into the last hole in his Bay Hill dogleg. Right. They put the pin all the way on the right by the water high, rough right left. So if you miss the fairway you’re in trouble. So obviously miss the fairway hits in the bunker way left.
So he’s got like a 40 yard bunker shot, downhill to water. He hits it over to three feet, four feet. He makes it. He goes, I remember telling myself all the last time, find a way, find a way, find a way, find a way. And I think that’s what winners do. That would be another one on my list.
Christina: Oh my gosh. That is the best takeaway ever. I want everyone out there listening to this. You can decide it’s your turn by finding a way. Find a way, make it happen. One of the things that I say, and I stole this from a good friend of mine when I was climbing Kilimanjaro, his line is there’s always a way to yes.
And that’s what he believed in his business. And he’s a multi seven figure business owner and just an unbelievably positive person, just like yourself. I just love hanging around with him. It was cool to spend a week on a mountain with him, but that was his slogan. He said there’s always a way to yes.
And it’s exactly what you just said. Find a way, there’s always a way, find a freaking way. And I absolutely love that. And I think that that’s what winners do. Something I want to kind of touch on real quick is, if you don’t mind, is you had a cancer battle, cancer issue come up back in the day.
Did that ever waiver your faith or what did that teach you?
Justin: So I had a liposarcoma in the back of my left leg. Luckily it was cutaneous, so it didn’t require radiation, chemo, anything like that. But I was actually just at MD Anderson yesterday for a checkup, so small world. But the thing is, I remember I had a little cyst on the back of my leg and the girl that I was dating at the time was doing a residency and she said, you need to get that taken off.
So I went and had it taken off and you’re going about your life. You don’t think anything of it. It’s like if you go to dermatologists, you’re not thinking they’re going to call you and tell you anything. And I remember I got a phone call and the doctor said, “Hey, you have cancer.” And I remember I was getting ready for work.
It was that early in the morning, it was like 6:30-7:00. I mean, they called me before they were open, I think. And I remember I just sat down. I was like, wow. And the first thought in my head was I don’t want my parents to see me die. And then the second thought was like, man, I have to tell my girlfriend.
And so I called and told her and she’s of course doing her internship or residency at the time for radiology and she spent the day looking it up. But the thing that it actually did, it’s weird because it gave you a different perspective on life. Right? So this sort of goes to a couple other traits that I think it takes to be great.
And one is – back to find a way. There’s going to be adversity. And you mentioned the mountain. I remember reading a book and it’s like you climbed Mount Kilimanjaro, right?
Justin: So the question I’ll always ask someone when they’re trying to be the greatest golfer in the world. If you were going to climb that mountain, do you think there’s going to be some cold and snowy days on the way up?
Christina: Yes, sir.
Justin: There is. So that means there’s going to be adversity. And that’s sort of how it looked at the cancer. There was adversity, but it also gave me a perspective. Right? So the perspective was every day matters. I don’t remember the book, but they make each day count.
I remember I read it when I was reading about Drew Brees, but yeah. Each day counts, you gotta win each day. And then the other thing is sort of persistence, just incremental improvements. So when they first say you have cancer, you don’t know if you’re gonna have radiation.
You don’t know if you have chemo, you don’t know what’s going to happen. But as far as my faith, no, you know, it actually deepens it because now you pray everyday. Right? Is it better here? Is it better in heaven? It’s probably gonna for me and that’s sort of the faith that it will be better there.
Jackie Burke’s, her mentor. So the other day I called him, it was his 98th birthday. So I call and I go, happy birthday, Mr. Burkes. I just want to make sure you have a great day. And he goes, the Lord, put me down here for a long trip, didn’t he, Justin? That sort of goes to we don’t know how long our trip is, so I could have a short trip.
I could have a long trip, you know, I would love a long trip because I get to impact people. Right. But if I get a short trip, I get a short trip and that’s how I just sort of viewed the cancer. And if something happened, I felt like I was going somewhere better. I just didn’t want to watch my family or friends have to watch them.
Does that make sense?
Christina: Yeah. I think one thing that you said there that was really important that I think is a huge part of why you’re so frigging good at developing champions and just honestly being one of the greatest humans I know is the fact that you literally just said your whole thing, your whole reason, your whole purpose for living is to impact others.
That is really what you get to do on a daily basis and you do it extremely well. And I think that you are living for your purpose. There’s some adversities, there’s cold and snowy days sometimes.
But overall, you are just truly grateful for what you get to do. And I love being around people like this, people who really honestly, like you’re right, when I texted him, I’m like, “What’s up, bro?” “Just living the dream!”
And that’s what you say every single time. I’m great. I’m amazing, living the dream because you truly believe it. And I think that that is one of the greatest qualities about you because you make everyone else around you want to really live the dream and be happy and enjoy the day and be so frigging grateful that they get another day on their journey.
Justin: Yeah, I want to add one thing for your viewers. The one thing real quick is emotions. Here’s why I think a lot of people get in trouble just real simple, and I am living my dream, and I think that you have to understand what emotions are used for. We’re human beings, we’re going to have emotions, but you’ve got to use your emotions to motivate you to some degree.
It’s like, if you love something, then you need to move closer to it, you know? But if it’s bad for you, you need to move away from it. Anger, you know, I don’t mind that players get angry to some degree, but they still have to be able to think clearly when it’s their time to hit their golf shot.
So in your life, understand you’re going to have positive emotions, negative emotions. That’s okay. It’s just like you want to live in the positive emotions and try. Understand someone dies in your family. That’s a negative emotion. You can’t stay there. You can’t live there. I miss some of the people that have died in my life.
I’ll miss them the rest of my life, but I focus on the way they impacted me positively. I don’t focus on the negative event of them not being here. And that’s how you understand your emotion, so to speak. If that makes sense.
Christina: God, I love that so much.
Love it. Love it. Love it. All right. So the last and final question that I always ask everyone is what is one decision that you were afraid to make that once you finally did it, it ended up better than you expected, or if it was shitty, what lesson did you learn?
Justin: Ask it again.
Christina: What is one decision you were afraid to make that once you made it, it ended up better than you expected or not as hard, or if it was a shitty decision, what lesson did you learn?
Justin: This is going to sound terrible, but I don’t have fear of anything. So I’ve never had a fear. It’s like I told you earlier, I’ve never had a fear of making decisions. And I think it’s easier for me for a lot of reasons.
We have great faith, right? You and I. And so the thing for me is I know in the Bible it tells you not to have fear, do not fear, do not fear, do not fear, do not fear.
And I’ve always expected things to work out. I think that sometimes in life, you have to gather the facts. I’m great at preparing. So, and there’s things you like, and don’t like, but I’ve never really had a decision where I said, no, I’m afraid to make that. Does that make sense?
Christina: Yeah. No, for sure for you, I believe that.
Justin: I think the thing you have to understand too though, is I don’t have a wife, kids and people that my decisions affect. It only affects me. And if you don’t have the ultimate self-confidence in yourself, delusional as I spoke in performance, then I think that you’re not going to be as great as you can be to some degree now.
And I don’t mean delusional as like I’m going to walk on water. Obviously I can’t walk on water. That’s a life and death situation for me. So, if I’m trying to perform it, whether it’s doing the interview with you, speaking on a live golf channel episode, going in front of a corporation speaking, some of those things aren’t exactly the difficult decisions.
People get nervous up there. You’re going to get nervous. That’s okay. It’s how you handle that and making a decision even to start my own company, like when we sold Jim’s company, it’s easy. Now, does that not mean you have a little trepidation, but fear? No. Do not fear.
Christina: I love it. I love that you were like the first person to answer “I’ve actually never had fear of doing something.”
I am so eternally grateful for you. You have blessed my life in ways that I’ve probably never even described before. I just love you, adore you. And I’m so grateful that you have been in my life.
And where can people contact you if they want to contact you? All the non-wives-children-people that we just mentioned.
What’s your social media, Justin, for people to get golf lessons and just to learn more about you?
Justin: We’re on Instagram @TheCrownGolf, @Justin_Poyntergolf.
The one thing too is the feeling’s mutual.
Christina has made a great impact on my life. Just as people are successful, you keep those people around you and you definitely keep the people that are a Christian influence around you and her and her husband have been tremendous people in my life. When they’re in town, we always have wonderful times, wonderful dinners.
Christina: It’s our favorite place. Tell everyone where we eat every single time. It’s my favorite place to go.
Justin: It’s Louisiana’s Special Pappadeaux.
Christina: We eat there every single time. Anyway, I love you. Thank you so much. And you guys always remember you too can decide it is your turn.