Martin, a 17 handicap told me; Sure, I make sure I avoid hitting into the trouble spots on the course. But then when stand over the ball I have a lot of negative thoughts like, dont hit it into the water, dont go left on this hole, dont come up short and so on.
Thats a lot of mental noise youve got going on there, I said. Yeah, Martin replied. Ive usually got a lot of that kind of noise running through my head he responded. Martin was a volunteer at a Mental Game clinic I was presenting to a group of 85 participants. We were all gathered around the driving range at a club and I asked the rest of the group if they had the same or similar experience as Martin and most of them said, Yes.
What You Dont Want
Its interesting that many golfers will stand over a golf ball and remind themselves of all the things they dont want to see happen. Remember, the mind, body and emotions act as one large imprinting mechanism and the messages you send it will soon turn into your experience!
Where else in your life do you do this? Do you go to a restaurant and say to the waiter or waitress who comes to take your order, I dont want the grilled cheese, I dont want the egg salad and I dont want the chef salad.? I doubt thats the way you place your order. If you did, the waiter or waitress would probably give you an impatient look!
When you drive your car do you say to yourself, I dont want to turn left here? Probably not. Do you say to yourself, I dont want to get off at this exit or I dont want to stop at that rest stop? Are you getting the idea now? When you go to a restaurant or are driving your car you are more apt to send yourself messages more in line with what you want rather than what you dont want. Why wouldnt you do the same thing on the golf course?
Martin answered that question by saying, Because on the golf course Im trying to hit a good shot as if this was some valid reason why he reminded himself what he didnt want rather than what he does want. Sorry, thats not a good enough reason I told him. If you tell the waiter what you want off the menu at the restaurant then tell yourself what you want on the golf course I told him.
Think of all your thoughts to be like a menu at a restaurant. Do you need to tell yourself what you dont want to eat? No. Do you need to tell the waiter what you dont want to eat? No. When youre on the golf course, let your thoughts be like the menu at your favorite restaurant and choose what you want. You might see a difference in how you feel and play the game!
If you have any questions about the FlowZone approach and how it can help your game, please call me direct at 847.681.1698.