You’ve heard the saying, “the mind is a terrible thing to waste,” and it’s also a terrible thing to leave unchecked. An undisciplined, misguided and underutilized mind is a poor shot, disastrous hole, or lost match waiting to happen. With the right training you can learn how to make your golf mindset your secret weapon.
It’s possible to consistently tap into your best game when you develop and actively direct your greatest asset in the bag – your mind. Instead of catching occasional glimpses of great play, you can improve your consistency from tee to green when you train your mind to work for you and not against you.
Why Your Mindset Matters
Experts agree that golf is 90% mental; sadly most golfers don’t consistently work on their mental game skills. The glitches, hiccups, and errors in your game are less often the result of poor technique. More often bad shots are due to your poor thought habits short-circuiting your ability to swing freely and consistently.
Like most, you may have no idea how many shots you’re giving away each round due to mentally getting in your own way. I can tell you it’s easily more than 3-5 per round on average. To help you save some strokes here are three things you can start doing to transform your golf mindset into your secret weapon.
#1 – Start Playing with an Opportunistic Outlook
How many times have you stood over a shot and thought about all the potential mistakes you could make? Many golfers operate from a mindset centered on the shots they’d like to avoid, rather than the target they’d like to hit. On a Par 3 over water for example, hoping to avoid the water turns it into an additional target. Where your mind goes your ball is likely to follow.
When you visualize a realistic flight path all the way to a single desired target, you will see that there’s nothing blocking your shot’s path. Simply put, there are no obstacles in golf unless you create them in your mind. The next time you catch yourself thinking about the worst-case scenarios over the ball, step away for a moment to clarify your desired outcome, then lock onto your target and go!
#2 – Make Confidence a Choice, Not an Option
If you’ve ever worried about hitting a poor shot, you were seeing the shot challenge as bigger than your current ability to meet it. Most golfers wait for their performance to prove to them why they should feel confident during a round. If that sounds familiar, then you probably spend a lot of time waiting. Confidence is not a feeling it’s a choice.
To swing with confidence, you must first choose to think confidently about your swing. And you can because you have a memory bank full of shots you’ve hit well in the past. So stop letting your memories of the misses eclipse your good memories. When you begin doubting your ability, take a moment to reflect on the last time you hit a shot with conviction, determination and success. The more you reflect on your strengths and great moments, the greater your ability to repeat them.
#3 – Play for You
While you may think that you are playing for yourself, if you’ve ever rushed a shot because you were worried about holding up the group that’s a sign that you were playing for others. Pace of play is a sensitive issue and I’m not suggesting that you play outside the normal pace for a round. What I want you to do is to take the time you need on every shot to approach it with a quality mental process.
The more you detail every shot plan, the less likely you are to hit errant shots that increase the quantity of strokes in a round. If you need more time to prepare then shorten the amount of time you spend chatting it up with your playing partners. When you consider that you’re actually playing golf for only 15 minutes during a 4-hour round you’ve got loads of time to approach every shot with more quality.
Leave me a comment below and let me know which of these three tips you will take into your next round.
Apply these strategies to make your golf mindset your secret weapon that sets the stage for success one shot at a time. The more actively you prevent your thoughts from going rogue the fewer the strokes you will give away.
Are you tired of high erratic scores, or playing great for 9 holes only to have things completely change for no reason?
In this short guide you’ll learn 5 targeted strategies to overcome the most common bad habits that are costing you strokes. I created this guide because too many golfers think they are focused on the right things, when in fact their focus is what’s hurting their game the most.
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