Do you feel you need to make a major life change but you don’t know what to do?

Are you scared to commit because you may fail or waste a lot of time and energy?

And what would it be like to ditch work to become a professional athlete?

This time we’re talking with Dan McLaughlin of The Dan Plan. He’s committed to practicing golf 10,000 hours over the next six years to become a PGA pro.

That’s six hours a day, six days a week for the next six years!

Listen as he discusses some ways that you can navigate the bumpy road of committing to a change.

In this interview:

  • What is The Dan Plan?
  • Does talent matter?
  • What to do when there are no safe bets
  • Wanting to make a change but not knowing what to do
  • Does passion make a difference?
  • One thing you can do everyday to change your life
  • What separates the amateurs from the pros
  • What’s driving you?

About Dan McLaughlin and The Dan Plan


It’s a project in transformation. An experiment in potential and possibilities. Through 10,000 hours of “deliberate practice,” Dan, who currently has minimal golf experience, plans on becoming a professional golfer. But the plan isn’t really about golf: through this process, Dan hopes to prove to himself and others that it’s never too late to start a new pursuit in life.


Dan is an average man by most standards. He’s a 30-year-old commercial photographer with no previous experience as a competitive athlete, nor is he in particularly good physical condition. Dan is slightly under average height and weight, has never played a full 18 holes of golf, and has only been to a driving range a handful of times. He’s not even sure if he’s a left-or right-handed golfer. Dan currently resides in Portland, Oregon.


Through his journey Dan hopes to inspire others to start exploring the possibilities life affords them. Though his isn’t an easy endeavor and is quite possibly impossible, if it inspires even one person to quit their day job and find happiness in their own plan, then the Dan Plan is a success.


On April 5th, 2010, Dan quit his day job as a commercial photographer and began The Dan Plan. Logging in 30-plus hours a week he will hit the 10,000 hour milestone by November of 2015. During this time, Dan plans to develop his skills through deliberate practice, eventually winning amateur events and obtaining his PGA Tour card through a successful appearance in the PGA Tour’s Qualifying School, or “Q-School”.


Talent has little to do with success. According to research conducted by Dr. K. Anders Ericsson, Professor of Psychology at Florida State University, “Elite performers engage in ‘deliberate practice’–an effortful activity designed to improve target performance.” Dr. Ericsson’s studies, made popular through Malcolm Gladwell’s book Outliers and Geoff Colvin’s Talent is Overrated, have found that in order to excel in a field, roughly 10,000 hours of “stretching yourself beyond what you can currently do” is required. “I think you’re the right astronaut for this mission,” Dr. Ericsson said about The Dan Plan.

Click here to visit Dan’s site.