Five Ways to Silence Your Inner Critic

By David BreslowSeptember 21, 2005, 4:00 pm
Youve heard it. Cmon, be honest, youve heard the rumblings of an inner voice that seems to pop up in your head just at a time you dont need it. Youre standing over your first tee shot with everyone watching. Youre looking at a 3-foot downhill birdie putt. Maybe youre going for a par 5 in two over water. Weve all heard this inner intruder and weve all been influenced by it. What is this invisible voice and where does it come from?
 
Donald, a 9 handicap called me and told me the most difficult thing he faced was a constant battle with the negative critic inside him on the golf course. Donald is a very successful business person outside the golf course but on it; he has a tendency to apply the work very hard attitude along with the Its never really good enough attitude. Both of these were interfering with his ability to not only relax but diminishing his enjoyment as well. If its never good enough, how can you really enjoy yourself on the golf courseor off it? I asked Donald. I dont enjoy it as much as I could except for some brief moments when something goes really wellbut then the need to make sure it stays that way pops up and the inner battle begins again. Donald replied. The word battle is quite appropriate here. This is exactly what it feels like when we have opposing forces battling for position inside us! Have you had this experience on the golf course? Do you know what its like to face negativity and doubt on one hand while trying to convince yourself that it doesnt exist on the other? Its very distracting and takes a lot of energy and focus away from the game of golf. In addition, if the critic is always telling you its never good enough, how can you enjoy what youre doing? Its almost impossible.
 
Who is this critic and who invited him or her to the party? Well, lets face it; there is a part of each of us that takes the role of inner critic and it doesnt need an invitation. Its very happy to show up on its own. Its purpose is to literally look for, identify and comment on all the negative things it can find. That wasnt good enough, This wont work, You cant hit that shot, Yes, the ball went where you wanted it to but that swing was lousy, Johns using a 7-iron and youre using a 5-ironyoure kidding me! and on and on the critic goes.
 
The word critic is defined as: (derived from the ancient Greek word krites meaning a judge) a person who offers a value judgment or an interpretation.
 
Self-critics can be the harshest of judges because a value judgment turns into a personal attack and when it gets personal; it is difficult to get out of. If youve ever attacked yourself, you know exactly what I mean.
 
Here are 5 steps you can take to quiet or delete the critic inside you:
 
1. Its a recording - - The critic inside you is a recording thats been played and replayed over time. Imagine your brain as having VCR capabilities. It has recorded this critic through practice and rehearsal over time. When the play button is hit; the recording turns on! The inner critic is an echo from past critics; you, friends, teachers, parents and so on.
 
2. Its only 1 part - - The inner critic is only one part of you; its not ALL of you! If its the loudest and most consistent part; thats only because youve paid more attention to it and ignored the other parts. Ignoring the other parts doesnt mean they arent there. Five cloudy days dont mean the sun isnt in the sky anymore does it? No, of course not. In the Wired To Win program we identify the other parts so you can begin recording them more often!
 
2. Accept It! - - The first rule of the Wired To Win program is: what you resist; will persist. This means that if you fight or resist anything; the thing you fight with gains more power! When youre inner critic shows up, learn to accept it. Besides; when has fighting with it ever gotten you anywhere?
 
4. Talk Back! - - Who says your inner critic is the definitive expert on anything? Its not! Once you accept that its real and its there; TALK BACK to it. The critic in you only knows one thing; what doesnt work! What about what DOES work? What about what you ARE doing well? What about what you ARE CAPABLE OF? Focus on these and you wont have to battle with your inner critic; instead youve directed your mind toward something more constructive.
 
5. Its NOT Personal! - - Watch your inner dialogue. Be wary of the words You or I. Those words are very personal. Im no good, You idiot! and comments like this are personal and when it gets personal; it gets deep! Change the words you or I to the words It or That. This now becomes That was a bad shot or It was a bad shot. It and That are not personal.
 
Special Note: We are launching a new program for athletes and the corporate sector. Its the Wired To Win program that teaches the powerful performance laws and principles that influence you at ALL TIMESalong with the 9 Habits of Success. For more info click on: www.theflowzone.net/corporate.html. Telephone Coaching is available for all areas of personal and professional development. For info on programs; email: David@theflowzone.net.
 
Related Links:
  • David Breslow Article Archive
     
    Copyright 2005 David Breslow. David is the author of Wired To Win and offers the highly acclaimed Wired To Win programs for athletes and business professionals to help them perform at the top of their game!. His unique approach helps people make quantum leap shifts! David has appeared on The Golf Channel, ESPN radio, etc. For more programs/services/products or sign up for a free newsletter (write newsletter in subject box). Contact: David Breslow 847.681.1698 Email: David@theflowzone.net or visit the web: www.theflowzone.net. For book orders call toll free: 1.888.280.7715.
     

     
  • Getty Images

    After Further Review: Tiger's return comes at perfect time

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 2:19 am

    Each week, GolfChannel.com takes a look back at the week in golf. Here's what's weighing on our writers' minds.

    On the current state of golf as Tiger Woods returns to competition ...

    Less than four days before Tiger Woods returns to official competitive golf for the first time in a year, Jon Rahm, the new second-ranked player in the world, won on the PGA Tour and Rory McIlroy made an impressive 2018 debut on the European Tour (T-3).

    Not since Ben Hogan, Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus crossed paths at the 1960 U.S. Open has there been so many superstars all poised for big seasons, with world No. 1 Dustin Johnson having already won this year and Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas both coming off stellar seasons.

    It’s a good time for golf. - Rex Hoggard


    On Tommy Fleetwood's continued success ...

    There have been scores of talented European players whose skills didn’t translate to the PGA Tour … and maybe, in a few years, Tommy Fleetwood will prove to be no different.

    He sure looks like the real deal, though.  

    His title defense in Abu Dhabi – on the strength of a back-nine 30 in windy conditions – was his third title in the past 12 months and 11th top-10 overall. A few of those have come in majors and World Golf Championship events, too, which led the reigning Race to Dubai champion to accept PGA Tour membership for this season.

    Beginning at Riviera, he plans to play exclusively in the States through May, then reassess for the rest of the year. Hope he sticks, because he’s a fun personality with tons of game. - Ryan Lavner

    Getty Images

    Rahm passes Spieth to become world No. 2

    By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:25 am

    With his win Sunday at the CareerBuilder Challenge, Jon Rahm picked up his second PGA Tour victory and moved to No. 2 in the FedExCup points standings.

    He picked up one more No. 2, too.

    The 23-year-old Spaniard passed Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, behind only Dustin Johnson.

    In 19 months, since June 2016, Rahm has rocketed from No. 776 in the world to No. 2, thanks in part to his low divisor, his number of events played.

    Asked after his playoff victory over Andrew Landry to discuss his rapid ascent up the world rankings, Rahm was almost at a loss.

    “It's hard to believe to be honest, passing Jordan Spieth,” he said. “That's a three-time major champion. I only have two wins. He's got 10-plus, right? It's again – I've said it many times – I never thought I was going to be at this point in my life right now.”

    Rahm may only have two PGA Tour titles, but this is his fourth worldwide win in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. He also took the Dubai Duty Free Irish Open and the DP World Tour Championship on his way to claiming the European Tour’s 2017 Rookie of the Year Award.

    Dating back to the start of last season on the PGA Tour, Rahm has racked up 12 top-10s, three runner-ups, and two wins.

    He will head to Torrey Pines next week ready to defend for the first time.

    Getty Images

    Brady compares self to Woods after winning AFC title

    By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 1:05 am

    Tom Brady and Tiger Woods are two of the all-time greats in their respective sports ... a fact that is not lost on the five-time Super Bowl winning quarterback.

    Fresh off leading the New England Patriots to a AFC Championship victory over the Jacksonville Jaguars, Brady was asked about winning the game despite a cut on his throwing hand - which made national news heading into the matchup.

    His response invoked the name of a certain 14-time major winner, something that would be tough to pull off, if not for the fact that he is, you know, Tom Brady.

    “I think it's kind of arrogant to say it bothered me when we had a pretty good game, so I wouldn't say that," the 40-year-old told reporters after the game. "It's like when Tiger Woods said, ‘That was my C game’ and he won the tournament."

    Tiger Woods winning with his "C game" may be a distant memory for golf fans, but no matter what game he brings, his next chance to win comes next week at Torrey Pines during his official comeback to the PGA Tour.

    Brady has a shot at his sixth Super Bowl title in two weeks. The Patriots would probably benefit from him bringing a little better than his "C game" as well.

    Getty Images

    Rahm beats Landry in playoff to win CareerBuilder

    By Nick MentaJanuary 22, 2018, 1:00 am

    Jon Rahm birdied the fourth extra hole Sunday to defeat Andrew Landry in a playoff, win the CareerBuilder Challenge and move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking. Here’s how things played out in overtime at PGA West:

    Leaderboard: Rahm (-22), Landry (-22), John Huh (-20), Adam Hadwin (-20), Martin Piller (-20), Kevin Chappell (-19), Scott Piercy (-19)

    What it means: This is Rahm’s second PGA Tour win and his fourth worldwide victory in the last year, dating back to last season’s Farmers Insurance Open. Rahm took the early lead Thursday with an opening 62 and after rounds of 67-70, he started the final round two back. On Sunday, he made five birdies without dropping a single shot on the intimidating Stadium Course. In the clubhouse at 22 under, Rahm watched as Landry made birdie on 18 to force a playoff.

    Rahm missed birdie putts that would have ended the tournament on the final hole of regulation and on each playoff hole. Finally, on his fourth trip down 18 of the day, his birdie bid found the cup. With the victory, Rahm passes Jordan Spieth to move to No. 2 in the Official World Golf Ranking, trailing only Dustin Johnson. He enters next week at Torrey Pines looking to defend for the first time.

    Best of the rest: A two-time Web.com winner playing his second full season on the PGA Tour, Landry shot 68 Sunday, making birdie on the 72nd hole to force extras. Once Rahm finally made birdie on the fourth playoff hole, Landry's putt to extend slid by on the right edge. This is Landry's best career finish on the PGA Tour. Had he won, he would have secured full Tour status through the 2019-20 season and earned invites to the Masters, Players, and PGA Championships.

    Round of the day: Sam Saunders fired an 8-under 64 to register this best finish of the season, a tie for eighth at 18 under. The reigning Web.com Tour Championship winner was 9 under par through 12 holes before making bogey at 13 and parring his way into the clubhouse.

    Biggest disappointment: Overnight leader Austin Cook was eyeing his second win of the season but never contended. The RSM champion carded two double bogeys Sunday en route to a 3-over 75, dropping him from the 54-hole lead to a tie for 14th.

    Shot of the day: Rahm's putt to win:

    Quote of the day: "One of us had to do it and either one of us would have been a well-deserving champion." - Rahm on his playoff victory over Landry