Next year, endeavor to do the following:
For at least one round, move up one set of tees and concentrate on making shots instead of on booming it.
For another round, move back one set of tees and think your way out of a distance jam.
Get fitted for wedges, and if necessary, have your favorite set adjusted to conform with the fitting results: loft and lie, sole grind, and swingweight.
Take a putting lesson.
Develop a pre-shot routine. Insert a needless but quirky movement to annoy your foursome mates.
If you have a foursome mate with a quirky move in his pre-shot routine, ignore him until his head seems about to explode. Then press.
Go to a golf collectibles show and heft a playable hickory club. Buy it. Take it home. Learn how to hit shots with it. Have fun. Reflect that you couldn't take BP with one of Ted Williams' bats, even if you could find one.
Plan a trip to play some of the great courses of England, Scotland, Wales and/or Ireland. While there, talk with locals, visit castles, and drink the beer. Oh, and play well and have fun.
If you're a public course player who is pressed for time, lobby your local course owner to set up a 3- or 6-hole rate. Then make it worth his while.
Go to a tour event and camp out under a tree and watch the groups go by.
Go to a tour event and follow one group throughout the entire round.
Take a kid to play golf. Ignore your own game and make him or her feel good about himself or herself. Be sure there's enough ketchup for the french fries afterwards.
Call a penalty on yourself. Do not expect applause.
Practice the driver less and the wedges more.
Do not expect to play like a tour player, any more than you expect to play like Carmelo Anthony in your YMCA basketball league.
Speaking of perspective, finally, finally, finally learn to be a big boy or girl about bad shots. (And watch your overall score improve.)
If you have anger problems, print out a picture of a silly cartoon character from the Internet, paste it on a bag tag, and laminate it. Hang it on your bag. Look at it when you are ready to rip your own head off. You will chuckle. (Patrick from SpongeBob SquarePants works well.)
Do not blather on and on about your game. Youve heard other people do it, and you know what its like.
Take a deep breath and remember the smell of the turf.
Step up to a crucial 4-footer and crush any negative thought under your mental boot heel. Crush it into fine powder and let it blow away.
Regrip, fer Petes sake. Twice. And do your spouses clubs while youre at it.
Take your turn running the bets, including all the side garbage, for your Saturday foursome.
Host a post-round barbecue. Or bring a six-pack of something good if youre the guest.
When you practice, have fun.
When you play, have fun.
When you talk about the game, have fun.
See a pattern here?
A great holiday season to everyone.
Email your thoughts to Adam Barr