They used to say talking to yourself was the first sign of madness! I, on the other hand, believe it to be a fantastic thing to do… dependent on what you talk to yourself about.
Positive affirmations! Talk nicely to yourself, and have some good quality inner dialogue, but here’s a tip… tell yourself what you are GOING to do, rather than what you want to AVOID!
I’ve lost count of the amount of times I’ve turned up before a game, and even before the first shot, golfers are telling themselves they’ll have a bad round. Totally crazy!
I’m know you'll have heard many golfers on the putting green exclaim ‘I wish I’d saved that one for the course’, as if you have an allocation of holed putts to be used during the day. Now that we are getting towards the colder winter months, I’m starting to hear… ‘It’s too wet’, ‘Too windy’, ‘the greens have been worked on, it’s a lottery with putts’! I’m sure you’ve also heard one or two corkers yourself? Seriously, golfers have defeated themselves before they’ve even struck a shot!
Even after the first one or two holes, I hear the following words and it really does make me smile to myself…. ‘I’ve just missed short putts on the first two holes, I know it’s going to be one of those days’… at which point I ask them what the winning Lottery Numbers are for this weekend, as it appears they can see into the future. The principle is the same.
Now, how can you turn that around on itself? Literally, just because you have hit one poor shot DOESN’T mean the next will be bad. Just because you have missed a three foot putt, doesn’t mean ALL three foot putts will be missed that day. Seriously, there is no logic to that way of thinking. (Clearly, if you are continually making poor shots, one after the other, then get yourself a lesson with a teaching pro).
Instead, go through your routine (and if you don’t have one, develop one, as I discuss on Mind Zone seminars), and have that internal dialogue… This one is going down the middle of the fairway, or this putt is being holed. The important thing here is to say to yourself what you WANT to do. Through a narrow gap, perhaps over a pond, the dialogue would be… ‘Go through my routine, steady swing, and finish the shot’… or whatever your routine is.
I always give stock answers when I’m at my local club and friends and members say to me ‘How have you been playing recently’… the answer is ‘Fantastic’ or ‘Yes, I’m playing really well’… (even though I may not have played for two weeks)!
Why not look at this area of your game in detail and become a more consistent golfer? Whatever your age and ability, then please do contact me.
Enjoy your golf!