Do you invest in regular instruction and practice diligently, but only see marginal improvement? Are you constantly improving, or have you hit the proverbial “glass ceiling”?
It’s a common lament among mid to high handicap golfers, that the more they learn, the worse they play.
The key to transforming your knowledge into results, is evaluating your fundamental beliefs about the game.
One of the most difficult challenges for any golfer, is learning to accept that the game is inherently unfair; the odds are stacked against you. There is always an element of luck that is beyond your control.
Your golf game is a by-product of your beliefs. Perhaps the most difficult challenge for golfers at any skill level, is accepting the belief that no matter how many lessons you take or practice balls you hit, there are no guarantees.
How often have you hit shots like a Tour pro on the practice range, and proceeded to play like a complete duffer? This ailment can afflict players at any skill level. A Tour professional can shoot a course record 62 on Thursday and score 72 on Friday. There is no rational explanation.
Even at the highest competitive level, the players’ swing changes from day-to- day. For the once-a-week golfer, their swing changes from shot to shot. All you can do, is learn how to control your thoughts.
How often have you hit a perfect shot that caromed off a rock out-of-bounds?
It doesn’t seem fair, but whoever said the game was supposed to be fair? All you can do is “hope for the best and prepare for the worst.”
In other sports, we can allay some of the blame for poor performance on our opponent; he or she was stronger or faster. With golf, however, you have no one to blame but yourself.
How can you overcome such outrageous odds?
Adopt the belief, that score is a result of factors beyond your control. Poor shots are inevitable. Instead of searching for a technical panacea on the practice range, develop the mindset that allows you to accept and overcome a poor shot. Set reasonable expectations.
According to legend, Sir Walter Hagen (sorry, showing my age) achieved remarkable success without practicing. When asked for his secret, he replied that he expected to hit at least seven poor shots in a game.
Why not adopt this attitude and stop beating yourself up? You might be pleasantly surprised at the results.
Thanks for reading!