Your Harshest Critic

By David BreslowNovember 10, 2004, 5:00 pm
Human beings criticize themselves more than any other species on the planet. Did you ever notice that animals dont criticize themselves for doing something wrong? When a dog chews up the newspaper do you think it feels badly or walks around criticizing itself for two weeks afterwards? I doubt it. We, however, might not only criticize ourselves for doing things we think are wrong or bad but we also have the capacity to criticize ourselves over a long period of time! Nobody abuses us like we abuse ourselves and this can be especially true on the golf course.
 
Arthur Ashe, a great Tennis champion once said:
 
You are never playing an opponent, you are playing yourself, your own high standards and when you reach your limits; that is real joy!
 
Your own high standards can be both a curse and a blessing depending on how your respond to them and how your develop yourself to meet your high standards. Unfortunately, many golfers use their high personal standards as a springboard to allow the voice of the inner critic to surface again and again. The critic within us sits in waiting for any opportunity to lash out and attack. It lurks underneath looking for situations that trigger you to harshly judge yourself and belittle yourself.
 
Harsh self-criticism is the ultimate set-up for failure and a sure fire way to suffer on the golf course. In my opinion, it is the highest representation of a lack of self-respect. Think about this for a moment. Would you lash out at someone else the way you judge and criticize yourself? When I pose this question to clients they generally respond with No Way!. Nobody else would accept such an attack so why do we? Your self-criticism has the same effect on you as it does if you criticized others in the same way. It creates tension, anxiety and disapproval. Harsh self criticism creates a strong force of negative energy and disharmony within the mind, body and emotions. The negative effects of self-criticism are:
 
  • Lack of self-trust
  • Lack of self-respect
  • Lack of confidence
     
    We display our self-criticism using phrases like:
     
  • Im not good enough
  • I cant believe I keep missing this shot
  • I never shoot a good score
  • Im a failure
  • Im just not good enough. Period!
     
    How often does your critic show up? Is your critic harsh or is it supportive?
     
    Here are a few things to remember when your critic appears:
     
  • The critic is only a PART of you; not all of you
     
    When the critic shows up it tends to overwhelm everything else. However, the reality is that the critic is only one small part of you. Put the critic in its place!
     
  • Substitute the word I with the word That
     
    When the critic shows up it tends to get very personal. Get rid of the word I and replace it with that. For example; instead of Im no good change it to that was no good. Try saying both statements right now. Notice the difference in your body between the two statements?
     
  • Embrace your critic!
     
    Criticism in and of itself is not bad, Its only when it becomes harsh and poisonously personal that it negatively affects you. Back off and let the critic help you learn something about yourself. What do you need to develop, improve or change? Call your local golf pro and consider developing your all around mental game as well. The critic is telling you something!
     
    To your best golf!
     
    Note: Please contact David directly via email (David@theflowzone.net) to learn more about the Executive Golf program for committed golfers, the FlowZone At Work corporate program and the Performance Based Program designed for personal coaching with David ON THE GOLF COURSE!
     
    Related Links:
  • David Breslow Article Archive
     
    Copyright 2004 David Breslow. David is the author of Wired To Win and offers a highly acclaimed Perform In The FlowZone' program no matter where you live or play. 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). Also, review the new series of Performance Training Manuals available online! Contact: David Breslow at 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

    Angela hits Sergio in stride on field at Superdome

    By Grill Room TeamDecember 18, 2017, 3:22 pm

    Sergio and Angela Garcia's super 2017 keeps getting more ... Super ... Dome. (+1 awful blog lede.)

    The couple started the year with Sergio's win at the Masters, then embarked on a whirlwind green jacket media tour, then kicked off El Clasico, then attended Wimbledon, then got married, then announced they were expecting their first child ...


    2017 Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia


    And now, they're throwing each other passes on the New Orleans Saints' home turf at the Superdome.

    Man, it must be so cool do that at the Silverdome. ... ... ... I'm sorry, it is the Superdome, brothers.

    Newsmaker of the Year: No. 1, Justin Thomas

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 1:00 pm

    He won a major, captured the FedExCup and was named the PGA Tour’s Player of the Year. It should come as no surprise that Justin Thomas holds the top spot on our Newsmakers list for 2017.

    Thomas entered the year ranked outside the top 20, and few might have pegged him for a transcendent campaign. But he kicked off January with a win in Hawaii, added another before leaving the Aloha State and never looked back.

    Thomas’ seminal moment came in August when he captured the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow for his breakthrough major title. One month after greeting Jordan Spieth behind the final green at Royal Birkdale, this time it was Thomas’ turn to have friends stick around to snap pictures with the trophy that signaled his arrival among golf’s upper echelon.


    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


    In addition to racking up the hardware – five in total, including the inaugural CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in his first start of the new wraparound season – Thomas dazzled with style. His runaway win at the Sony Open included an opening-round 59, and his third-round 63 at Erin Hills marked the first time anyone had ever shot 9 under on a U.S. Open venue.

    Thomas’ consistency was rewarded at East Lake, when a runner-up finish at the Tour Championship netted him the season-long title and $10 million prize. It was in the subsequent press conference where he shared the goals list he had written into his cell phone in February, having ticked off nearly every one. It showed a dedicated attention to detail as well the tactical approach with which Thomas had steered his rapid ascent.

    Heading into a new year, he’s now very clearly entrenched as one of the world’s best. And as his career progresses, it’s likely we’ll look back at 2017 as the point where Thomas first transformed great potential into eye-popping results.

    Win No. 1: Title defense at the CIMB Classic

    Article: Thomas (64) rallies to defend CIMB title


    Win Nos. 2 and 3: The Hawaiian double

    Article: Thomas refuses to let disastrous hole derail TOC win

    Article: Worst week ever ends with another title at Sony Open


    Record Round No. 1: 59 at the Sony Open

    Article: Thomas becomes youngest player to shoot 59

    Take a look: Thomas’ scorecard from his amazing 59


    Record Round No. 2: 63 at the U.S. Open

    Article: Thomas sets U.S. Open record with 9-under 63


    Temporary Slide: Open MC makes it three in a row

    Watch: Thomas loses club, makes 9, misses Open cut


    Mr. Major (and win No. 4): PGA champ at Quail Hollow

    Article: Thomas joins the club – the major club


    Win No. 5: Dell Technologies Championship

    Article: Thomas wins the battle of buddies over Spieth


    The $10 Million Man: FedExCup champ


    Biggest Win of All? Player of the Year


    And One to Grow On: Wins at CJ Cup in 2017-18 season

    Article: Thomas caps torrid 12-month run with CJ Cup win


    Photo Galleries: Best of ...

    Best of: Justin Thomas and Jillian Wisniewski

    Best of: Justin Thomas through the years

    Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

    By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

    The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

    They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

    Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

    Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

    Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

    ''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

    The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

    In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

    Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.