The Goofy Game of Golf Searching for the Answer

It’s freezing in the Burgh with no let up in sight. We have had some brief moments in January where you could get out and play, but it has either been raining when the temperatures have risen, or I just couldn’t get out because of prior commintments. In recent blogs I discussed the first four mental A’s, Anxiety, Anger, Acceptance, and Awareness.  Today I am going to discusss the final mental A, Adjustment. When you are playing this game there will be two adjustments you will have to make.

THE BIG ADJUSTMENT:  This adjustment is related to getting out of bed. How do you feel. How is the weather. How has your week been going. How is this golf day going to go. Many times, things can go badly right at the outset. Here in Western Pa., despite what you are told on TV, the weather is very unpredictable. You may go to bed expecting one thing and get up seeing another. You may go to bed feeling fine and get up with a headache, a stiff back, or just not feeling right. When you get to the course there may have been an unexpected delay, or somebody in your group is late. These are all things you must be ready to deal with if you are going to get the most out of your golf game. Its almost always a bad thing if on your golf day, you have a commintment to be at a certain place at a certain time after your round. Sometimes it may be best just not to play. These are things, just to name a few, that have nothing to do with golf, that can have a huge impact on your golf game.   You must be able to adjust your thinking and expectations, depending on how all these variables are impacting your mind.

the small adjustment: This is the adjustment you must make on a shot to shot basis. As you go through your routine for each shot, chip, and putt, you must feel that you are totally ready to execute the stroke. If you feel misaligned, your address position is bad, or there is doubt about the stroke in any form, then your chance of executing a good shot is remote. Getting in that “just hit it anyway” mode will spell disaster. That’s the mode when you feel that something just isn’t quite right, but you hit it anyway.

There are your two adustments that you are going to have to make if you are going to play to the best of your ability. Now lets look at how the other four A’s affect this.

The bad A’ s: Anger and Anxiety. If your upset or anxious about things going on outside of your golf life, then the BIG ADJUSTMENT will be always difficult to do. Depending on how things are going it may be best not to play until these things can be dealt with. You must find a way to block these things out to really enjoy your game and do your best. If you get angry or anxious over the results of your shots then the small adjustment will very rarely be accomplished.

The good A’s: Acceptance and Awareness. If you are aware and accept the fact that many times life is not perfect, and can deal effectively with life’s challenges, then THE BIG ADJUSTMENT will be easier to accomplish. If you can do the same thing with the results of your shots, then the small adjustment will become part of your game.

Next week I will begin discussing the mind-body connection, by writing about what I consider the biggest mind-body disconnect in the history of golf, at one of the most memorable tournaments of all time. Meanwhile stay warm, and by the way, instead of coming up with these catchy names, like POLAR VORTEX, why don’t you just figure out a way to predict the weather better, WEATHER CHANNEL See you next week.

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2 Responses to The Goofy Game of Golf Searching for the Answer

  1. Vet

    Great post. You captured what most golfers feel and think when playing golf. The interesting thing is that we can apply the same advice to real life. Thanks for making me think.

    Cheers
    Jim

  2. Brian Penn says:

    Vet, how about the “Distraction Vortex” for another way of describing your Big A. I could write a book with all the examples of how I’ve been affected and/or mishandled Big A’s. Great post. Thanks! Brian

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