No matter who we are or what we do, we all feel pressure at times. Whether it's on the golf course or at work or when you're the emcee at your friend's wedding reception and everyone is counting on you not to stink. Achieving anything in life will have some level of pressure associated with it, therefore pressure isn't something we should avoid, but rather something we should embrace.
It's that time of year when those of us who have endured a long winter start to emerge from our shanties, often scruffy looking and mumbling to ourselves. Winter can be an emotionally jarring time for golfers, but that's also what makes spring the most exciting time of year...
Stay patient. So simple. Why is it so difficult sometimes? I've struggled staying patient on the course at times. In my previous blog entry I wrote about how patience was taken over by frustration in our first round of the Calgary Golf Association's Riley's Best Ball event, which knocked us to the consolation side. Since then we've mustered up a couple wins and found ourselves in the consolation quarter-final match last night on the Hawk course at Priddis Greens G&CC. It has taken me a while to implement relentless patience this season, but I have started to find some recently.
After I published my Goals for the 2017 Golf Season, I had several followers ask me to "reveal my hand" and expand on my mental game routine referenced in that post. I am not an expert in human psychology, but I do take a keen interest in it. Even in the most common social encounters I like to observe behaviours and body language (including my own) because I find it fascinating how our minds work and react. When it comes to golf I find it even more fascinating and I always take inventory of my thoughts in an effort to correlate them with performance. A few of my own observations:
I fell down a Google wormhole a few days ago searching out some of the most cliche sayings of all time. I had no purpose for this search other than to relentlessly avoid whatever I was supposed to be doing at the time, but then I started to realize that golf provides some strong exceptions to some of these sayings and I thought it would be fun to share them with you. Please enjoy.
The mental side of golf can sure feel like a mind warp sometimes. One day you're in the zone and think you have FINALLY figured it out. At that moment you know you are never going to let yourself slip out of the zone ever again. Then the next day your mind seems to be your own worst enemy. Ugh. We've all been there. My belief is that being in the zone (or not) comes down to a battle between the primitive part of our brain and our higher levels of consciousness...
When I think back to playing golf as a kid, I can't recall any bad memories. The first things that come to mind are holing clutch putts, being on winning teams, and truly loving when I found myself in a tough spot near the green so I could show off my touch. Of course, this wasn't always the case. There were plenty of bad shots, plenty of defeats, and I didn't get it up-and-down from that tough spot every time. The cool thing about the mind of a kid is that those things aren't filed away carefully for future consideration like they are once we're adults ...
When someone is feeling confident, it's common sense that it's likely accompanied by good posture, a smile, eye contact, and maybe even a bounce in their step. Conversely when someone isn't feeling confident, they may have poor posture, will talk quietly, and are more likely to drag their feet when they walk. Is confident body language simply a … Continue reading How Body Language Can Improve Your Golf Game
I saw a tweet today that caught my eye and provoked a lot of thought about the mental and physical aspects of golf. https://twitter.com/OracleRio/status/534768937813426176 Obviously it's intended to be humorous and possibly poke fun at the frenzy of mental game preachers out there who claim the only thing holding you back is your mental game. … Continue reading Golf: Mental or Physical?
Last weekend I played in a two day stroke play tournament out at Cottonwood Golf and Country Club, a private course located near Calgary, Alberta. Although I was going into the tournament without any expectations, I was looking to take some lessons learned from Club Championships and apply them over the weekend. Unfortunately, my scores … Continue reading Playing Golf Like a Kid