Mental Preparation

Preparing yourself mentally for practice or play is more important to a positive outcome than the physical preparation.

Do not “expect” to play well. Good golf is about embracing the possibilities and not expecting anything with regards to the final outcome. Expectations create pressure and that’s certainly something you could do without.

When you’re driving to the golf course, play the round in your mind and imagine birdie-ing every hole. I don’t want you to start thinking about your score and setting that as a target for yourself, just imagine what it feels like to hit it down the middle of the fairway from each tee and hit your approach shots close and then hole the birdie putts. The idea here is that you are ingraining those positive images in your subconscious which will give you a better chance of making those images a reality when you’re on the course.

Chasing a score, typically has the opposite effect. Focusing on score means you are focusing on uncertainty, which will set you up for a rocky ride. You need to put your focus on those things you have 100% control over.

The only thing within your control is the process of hitting good golf shots.

Tour player’s talk about the importance of focus on “the process”, instead of getting caught up in all the distractions around them (their score, other players’ scores, what just happened and what might happen etc).

Make the shot routine (which includes the post-shot routine) your only goal for the round and make that your measure of success. This will ensure you are firmly in the present and the scores will follow. Having this mind-set from the beginning will take the pressure off and make good scores far more likely!