One of our most important golf tips: Self-Sufficiency is one of the 8 Champion Traits from our research on the PGA Tour players.
It means your prefer to make your own decisions and guide your own ship. You are independent minded. This can easily mean that you are trying to figure this game out by yourself. You might take lessons but you are always judging whether the instruction works for you.
On Tour, the Team approach is standard procedure for most Tour players. They have gathered a group of experts in every area that can help them play or manage their business. They have a swing coach, a fitness guru, a physical therapist, a sport psychologist, expert club fitting and a professional manager. They may also have a nutritionist, a massage therapist, a travel agent, a PR coach and an orthopedic surgeon. They will get the best they can in every area they think can help their performance.
This is the definition of a professional. One who actively does everything possible to perform their best. This is now almost required to compete at that level. What we find with most golfers today is that they are working hard on their game and doing something on the fitness and flexibility side. But it tends to stop there. Especially with younger golfers.
What about the Mental Golf Game?
This natural preference for doing it yourself, being your own boss seems to offset all the media discussion of the Mental Game and how important it is. Most players will say golf is 90% mental. But this is just the cliche they have all heard and repeat. They don’t mean it. If they did they would work on it, right? But they don’t.
In a survey we conducted a few years ago, we asked the question of avid amateurs, “Why don’t you work on the mental game?” They responded in this order: “Don’t know where to get it. Don’t have the time to work on it. It is too expensive. I just play for fun.” What is more fun than playing well?
In our culture, working with a psychologist means you are weak mentally. None of us likes to think of ourselves as weak or not able to figure it out for ourselves. We like to be Self-Sufficient, independent of others.
The media and other mental gurus tend to offer simplistic suggestions of what you need to do mentally. You may have a view of the mental game as being pretty simple and no practice needed. Just focus and concentrate when playing a shot. That is all there is to it. Or just remember to think about some particular thing when you are playing and you will be OK.
Then, if your play is not up to your standards, you will go looking for solutions through your physical game. Never look inside or to others on the mental side for answers.
So ask yourself this question and be brutally honest with yourself. Are you going to work seriously on your mental game this year or would you rather not?
Don’t worry about preferring not to. This is only natural. There is nothing wrong with you, especially if you have Champion levels of Self-Sufficiency. But you are preventing yourself from playing your very best and progressing faster by avoiding working on your mental game.
If you are really motivated to improve your performance, then you have got to put some serious time and effort into your mental game.
Tag, You’re It!
The first step when you are ready is our Mental Game Builder Package of online tools. It includes two assessments to measure your current mental skills and compare your personality to the frequent winners on Tour. Recommendations will be made in the reports you get back. The Online Coaching System is included and helps you with understanding the principles, thought control techniques, a video of the Mental Routine, lots of golf tips and how to prepare for and learn from your rounds.
To go faster and more thoroughly you can attend one of our Weekend Mental Game Schools near San Antonio. You will get 15+ hours of coaching on course and in the classroom. The Package is included in the School price right now.
Golf is the toughest mental game but we need to keep improving. One needs to choose the most forgiving driver and invest in indoor putting green to practice shots at home too. I am practising everyday and reading blogs to improve my game. It has helped me immensely. I am working on my mental skills as well. The blog is really encouraging for people like me. I hope to improve with time.
Thanks Nethan. Ready to help with your mental game. We coach over the phone all the time. Stay well!