When golf gets too hard
Golf can be a difficult sport. No matter how hard you work at it and how much you want to play well, some days the ball doesn’t go where you want it to.
And this is frustrating. And if you don’t have a strategy your mindset and attitude can take a pounding. I should know, I recently experienced one of the absolute low points in my career. Here’s the story.
Playing in a semi-important club event I let my frustration get the better of me. After a few too many poor shots, bad bounces and bad scores I threw my putter off the green. I was annoyed (only at myself) and yes it was a stupid thing to do. I didn’t break the club and no real damage was done. I probably looked like a goose and I’ll have to learn to live with that.
Making matters worse some players on another hole saw my antics. The entire event probably looked pretty bad and my club throwing event was reported to the powers that be.
Long story short: I have been told not to do it again.
The event has made me take stock of why I play golf. It should be for fun, enjoyment, the challenge and a little exercise and in this instance I let myself down.
So what’s the solution to getting your game back on track?
In my case I took some time off late last week and traveled down to the Mornington Peninsula to play some golf with good friends. Although we are all competitive, I decided to play for fun and not worry about the score or how I played.
This is not always easy to do. But you need to have faith that by swinging freely and letting go that your system will take care of the golf part. This is how I’ve always played my best golf and it rarely fails to deliver. The tricky part is having the discipline to do it time after time.
It also helped that I was playing on unfamiliar courses in tough conditions. The challenge was what I needed to refocus my commitment to automatic golf and forget about results or score I shot. I would be lying if I said I played the best golf of my life, but I did play well and I really did enjoy myself.
Golf is a difficult sport and there’s nothing you can do about it. You can get stressed, panic and play safe. Or you can step up to the ball and make the best swing that you can make without a care in the world. The choice is yours.
Sometimes a bad round, situation or poor shot is the “kick in the bum” that you need to get you back on track. A slight refocus is all that is needed and normality can be restored quickly. This is my way of turning a negative into a positive.
A special thanks to Craig Funch at The National Golf Club for looking after us and making the day such a good one.