Just as you go through life day to day you move through the golf course shot to shot. Everything is going along smoothly and then WHAM! You may have missed a deadline, had an accident, lost a job – something has thrown you off course. On the golf course it might be a putt that just lipped out, or a shot that landed out of bounds, in to a water hazard, bunker or deep rough.
These events occur in life and in golf, what matters most is how we react to them. When something throws you off course do you get angry, does it paralyze you or do you dig down deep to try and change the situation, or do you just let it roll off your back? Chances are how you handle everyday living will be very similar to how you handle adversity on the golf course. For some of you this is good news and for others it might be an “ah ha moment” that you need to focus on.
More and more professional golfers are seeking the advice of sports psychologists and life coaches as much as, if not more than, their swing coaches to improve their golf games. Skills to identify when you need to bring yourself back in check before you go off the deep end are valuable. In addition, learning how to focus or create reserves to get you through the difficult times are also priceless to any golfer who wants to remain in the game. The pros know that in order to play their best golf they have to be present and positive for each and every shot.
To get to the next level in golf you might not need a swing fix as much as a skill set to avoid or deal with adverse conditions on the golf course. Understand that no one plays a perfect round of golf, no one! So why do you expect that of yourself. Ben Hogan, one of the greatest golfers of all time felt he only had three or four “good” golf shots a round. Anyone familiar with Hogan’s game might be taken back by the statement. Many would aspire to have the remaining shots of his round that we perceive as awesome! Everything is relative. What you think is a bad shot another golfer might look at as an opportunity or even a goal that they aspire to.
Developing your golf game is more than learning the fundamentals of the swing; it includes our practice and preparation habits, how we handle ourselves during the highs and lows of a round and what we do to maintain our enjoyment of the game or take our game to the next level. Developing skills of attention, focus and synchronicity will help you enjoy the great game of golf for years to come.