APRIL 1 — This is not the time to be selfish. It's very easy to think that you're young and nothing is going to happen to you if you catch the virus. We have to think about society, everyone we have next to us. You may not have symptoms and yet still transmit the virus. And you don't know how far it can go and who can get affected.
From the bottom of my heart, millennials, please think twice about what you’re doing. I know younger people have less of a risk of being infected but the people who are being affected the most are our elders. Please stay at home, observe social distancing and wash your hands regularly. It’s a very small price to pay.
At this time, my thoughts are with my family in Spain, including my 85-year-old grandma. I’ve kept in touch with them regularly and despite the self-quarantine, they are all in great spirit. I also want to thank everybody in the health care system: nurses, doctors, anybody related and trying to help the people in need. It’s unbelievable what you guys ae doing. And we cannot thank you enough.
As someone who arrived in the world of professional golf at a young age, I had to learn very quickly from my mistakes. There have been moments that were not my best, low moments when I had to take several steps back and regroup. I've been learning from these experiences and I've been climbing to where I am now.
There are ups and downs all the time. I started playing this game from a very young age with the aim of being number one in the world and being among the best. There are times when you have no doubt and there are times when you think you are not going to get anywhere near it. It is what it is. You have to keep fighting and maintain your confidence.
Gradually you get used to the magnitude that everything we do can have a great positive or negative effect. It is for you to adapt and learn that you have a great platform to help people. And also know that there are many children who consider you their favorite player and that you can and should pass on good values to them.
For starters, win or lose, we need to always do it with humility. You're never going to see me end up angry after losing a tournament. The winner has played better than you and deserves it, so that's the first thing. In golf, there is also a lot of integrity involved and ultimately, every time you do something wrong in golf, you apply penalties to yourself.
You also learn that, as with anything in life, there is a long process in which you have to work hard. You have to follow that process to improve as a person and at whatever you want to do. It's not a consistent ascent. There are good times, there are bad times, very bad times and very good times. With experience and work, the good ones become even better, and the bad ones less bad.
Around a year ago, I had one of those less bad moments when I finished tied ninth in my third Masters Tournament. On two previous Sundays at Augusta National, I've been kind of close to the lead, but not that close. Hopefully, the next time I will play well for three days, so on Sunday, I will have more opportunities to win the tournament and serve a good T-bone steak at the champions dinner, as did Seve Ballesteros and Jose Maria Olazabal.
There was also one of those even better moments around this time last year when I won the Zurich Classic of New Orleans along with my partner, Ryan Palmer. Ryan and I get along very well and there's great chemistry. Our game is similar, we like to hit mostly fades and it was a week in which we both played very well.
Now, a year later and under the current circumstances which have seen tournaments including the Zurich Classic being canceled or postponed, the most important thing for us is to assume our individual responsibility and do everything possible to not spread the virus. And if we have to stay home, we stay home.
My wife Kelley and I have been keeping busy at home over the past few weeks to stay fit and mentally fresh, exercising and doing puzzles. We look forward to seeing all of you again very soon when the PGA Tour resumes play. In the meantime, take care, stay safe and stay home.
* Spain’s Jon Rahm is a 3-time PGA Tour winner and you can watch him and the PGA Tour on Astro’s Golf Channel and GOLFTV powered by the PGA Tour.
** This is the personal opinion of the columnist.