Golf is 'game between the ears' and is hands down the most frustrating sport. There's nothing like crushing a drive 300 yards down the fairway, then following it up with a perfect iron shot landing 15 feet from the pin… then, of course, proceeding to three putt for a bogey. The inconsistency in this game is what makes it so discouraging. However, there are a few mental suggestions I have to help overcome those aggravating times.
1. Have a routine
Have you ever seen a golfer having a bad day eventually get to the point where they just walk up to the ball and hit it just to see what will happens? That’s not helping anything. It may sound a little silly, but coming up with a routine before every shot, hole, or round, can make all the difference in the world. Bringing a little bit of consistency to a game that is so inconsistent could be the answer to why you can’t finish as strong as you start.
2. Don’t let yourself get distracted
There are countless distractions out on the golf course: strong winds, bad course conditions, and of course getting stuck behind people playing too slow. It’s important to understand that you can’t control your surroundings, so it’s easier if you learn to deal with them rather than let them affect your game. This is definitely easier said than done, but learning to focus on your game one shot at a time could really improve your score and make the round a whole lot more enjoyable.
3. Be comfortable
This one is simple. Wear clothes that you are comfortable in, go with people you enjoy being around, and play the way you like to play. If you like to walk the course... Walk. If you like to take a cart, then take a cart. Whatever it is that makes you comfortable, make sure you consider it before you go out onto the course and try to implement it into your game.
4. Take it one shot at a time
Everyone knows there is no worse feeling than hitting a poor tee shot after coming off a great hole. The way to overcome this is understanding that this is golf, and this stuff happens. Learning to deal with a bad shot and accepting it is the first step in making up for it on the next shot. If you can go into your next shot with the previous shot out of your mind, it will make it a lot easier to swing with confidence, focus, and composure.
5. Trust yourself
Finally, it is important to know that you have played this game before, and that you are capable of overcoming a bad round without putting too much thought into it. Just going back to the basics and knowing that most of your struggles in this game are typically mental can really go a long way in developing as a golfer.