Golf is more about psychology rather than physics. The arc of the golf swing has always been constant however the way we think about golf changes every second. Golf swings have been pre-determined by the golf professionals but technology has yet to excavate the brainwaves of these same professionals. Amateurs always are looking to improve but they want a physical fix and don’t want to address the elephant in the room, their mind.
Dropping those vital shots to get to your dream handicap is not a matter of falling fatal to marketing ploys nor wasting extortionate amounts of money on golf lessons. It can all be fixed by addressing the flaws with the wiring of your brain. Golf evokes negativity at every turn, there is no doubt that golfers think more negatively than positively about their chance on the course. How about we change that? Instead of changing your driver, remapping your golf arc path and redefining your putting stroke, why not just change the way you think.
This thinking is what I like to call realistic optimism (RO) and can be applied to all aspects of life, but let’s keep it all golf-orientated. The principle behind RO is the idea to be optimistic but not become dependent on the result. Let’s say you have 220 yards to carry over a multitude of bunkers, you take your 3-wood and try and make the reach. Now, if you don’t make it you’ll be upset and angry about taking the shot on in the first place, but if you do you’ll become over-excited and make clouded judgements about similar situations. Whatever the result, with the RO approach, you are content you made the right choice and nothing would’ve changed your mind. You couldn’t control nature to will the ball onto the green but what you could control, you did. That’s all you can ask for.
A real-world example of this was such as yesterday where a customer at work asked me why his strikes with the driver were coming off the top of the club face. I said to him, it’s all in the way you think. The swing was sound, nothing to get too riled up about. However, he told me he was working on compression with his irons. Bingo, I found the flaw. He was inherently thinking that all golf shots were the same. So, I made him imagine that the tee he was hitting from was his phone or something of value to him. You would be allowed to brush the surface of the phone and send it flying 5 yards but if you connected at 100mph with a large surface area, the phone would be destroyed. I told him to think about sweeping the ball off the phone instead of hitting it. Instant results. RO approach strikes again.
The RO approach can have explicit and implicit fixes but everyone can adopt this methodology to knock off a few shots from their rounds. Think better, play better.
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