Are you ready to go there?
Here are Symptoms of Losing the Mental Game. Answer truthfully.
(ask another person what they think if you are not sure)
- I play better in practice than in competition.
- I am inconsistent.
- I have a pattern of scoring: good front – bad back nine or bad front – good back nine
- I have the Yipps.
- I cannot break through a certain score.
- I do not start my rounds well.
- I do not finish my rounds well.
- I experience a lot of emotions on the golf course.
- I am worried about what others think about me.
- I cannot let go of a miss or bad hole for some time.
- I struggle with putting.
- I lose my swing at some point in the round.
- I swing too fast on the first tee.
- I fail to perform when it is really important.
Golf is really hard for a human being to do well. The game itself is hard because of all the variables and different skills required with 14 different clubs, plus the weather.We have time to think between shots and over the ball. It takes a long time to play.
In all other sports, we do not get lots of time to think during the game. We have to react or respond to a moving object or person.
So don’t feel bad if you answered yes to some or many of the Symptoms above.
Your natural responses are mostly wrong for this game.
We make the score important. We count every stroke. So your natural response is to try to hit good shots and not make mistakes. This leads you to being very careful and deliberate when the shot is important, naturally.
You think that you need to swing in a certain or perfect way to hit the ball well and consistently. So where does your attention go? To your swing and doing it just so. So you have swing keys that are very important to you.
This means that you are setting yourself up like a machine and your attention is on your swing while swinging, not on sending the ball to the target. You have just become less athletic than you can be. Trying to control your swing will disrupt your swing and make it inconsistent.
But the result, the shot and the score are important so you are unhappy when the shot doesn’t come off the way you want. Of course you are. You tried to do your very best to hit the shot well and it didn’t work. It is natural to react or be frustrated.
Our thoughts about the game and our effort to succeed and the nature of the game are setting us up for frustrations and failures to perform. This is not your fault. You are only human and untrained.
If you are not careful, the natural responses can lead to bigger problems in your game.
You can play this game well.
You have probably played a round of golf really well for your ability, scoring unusually low. It usually happens by accident. When it does you feel great while playing. You are confident and patient. You have great focus. The swing is just happening. The ball is going where you want it to. Misses happen but they are no big deal. Some call this The Zone.
Good mental routines often happen when you are in a trouble spot that requires you to hit an unusual shot. This takes your focus to the ball traveling to the target in a certain way. Your thoughts stay on creating and playing the shot, not much on the swing. Right?
During any round you do hit good shots. This is what keeps us coming back. But those other shots just ruin our score.
Are you ready to start Winning the Mental Game?
To play your best, to improve your game, to get into your Zone more often, you need to start thinking and operating in different ways than you naturally do.
How do you compare to the frequent winners on Tour mentally? What is your golf mentality?
Our research on the Tour Players discovered that the frequent winners on Tour think differently than the rest of us. The differences are based on their personalities. We discovered that they score differently on 8 personality traits than the other Tour players. The differences are big.
Think about the best players in the world. What are they doing to get there? How are they different? It is not the swing, or their size and shape, their strength or length, their equipment or ball. No they are different from each other in these areas. Are they more disciplined? NO Do they work harder than the other Tour players? NO
These 8 Champion Personality Traits are the key. The frequent winners naturally think different than the rest of us.
You need to identify where you are different and then learn to think like them when you play. You will not be different in all 8 Champion Traits, only some of them. That’s where you challenges for golf come from.
We can help with the same personality assessment the Tour Pros took in our studies on the PGA Tour and LPGA Tour.
Then with our experience working with over 400 Tour players so far, we can make recommendations that are effective for you, that help you think and operate like those frequent winners. We are not trying to change your personality only help you learn how to handle your personality differences and tendencies from the Champions, to emulate the Champions when you play.
Everyone needs mental foundation skills to perform well, Champions too
1. You need a mental routine that results in your swinging confidently and fully, athletically through the ball with great focus and tempo. With this you will have little focus on your swing and controlling it.
Your mental routine includes calculations behind the ball, full commitment through impact, visualizing the shot and imagining the feel of the shot before you play it.
2. You need awareness of your level of arousal and the ability to manage it for the shot you are playing. On a 1-10 scale where 1 is very relaxed and 10 is very aroused, optimum shot making happens between 4-6. 4 for putting and short game and 6 for the long game. Higher or lower than this will result in reduced performance. Our Mind Meter Pro measures your level of arousal during the golf shot and will help you learn to do this.
3. You need awareness of your thoughts and their effect on you. You need the ability to control your thoughts effectively. Your thoughts between shots and before the round need to be controlled, not just your thoughts over the ball. The Mental Routine should take care of controlling your thoughts over the ball.
a. Controlling your thoughts controls your emotions. Nobody can just stuff the emotions. They are happening whether others can see them or not. The emotions and the chemicals you release in your body are all bad for your golf.
b. Controlling your thoughts after a miss or unlucky outcome is super important to your ability to keep playing and recover. Our Four Question method will help you handle the misses and keep playing.
4. Mental preparation for the round, starting with the practice round and a written game plan are part of your mental foundation skills and process. Thought control, mental goals for your round and imagery practice the night before are important to your preparation.
5. Your warm-up before the round and getting mentally ready to play are also foundations skills.
Stop accepting mediocre and frustrating performances.
You can learn to do all these things with the right knowledge and coaching.