For many golfers, the mental side of the game is completed neglected. Here's a typical scenario:
Wake up late, argue with family, speed to the course, run to the tee block, forget the card, run to the pro shop, grab a card, scurry back to the tee block, fumble for a decent ball, and promptly top it off the tee.
We've all seen it, and we've all been there.
It's difficult remaining calm under pressure. After topping it off the tee. Hitting a hook or a slice out of bounds. The ability to gather your thoughts and move on to the next shot with positive self-belief is difficult.
Golf in many ways is a reflection of life itself. Every day we're confronted with problems. Things don't go our way. We're late. Forgetful. Accidental.
In a round of golf, we can experience a wide range of challenges, feelings, and emotions, each one different, each one uniquely challenging.
Here are some mental thoughts to help you navigate your way through the game of life.
Don't be too hard on yourself and set realistic goals.
Believe in your ability.
Be creative and seek out opportunities. Layup. Play for position.
Visualize success and let your imagination guide you.
Take the road less traveled.
Surround yourself with positive people.
Don't think, imagine.
Anything is possible if you believe it is.
Swing the club, don't hit the ball.
Love the game.
Be patient and success will come to you.
Never, ever give up.
Practice rhythm and tempo in your mind.
See the ball flight before you play.
Don't forget to marvel at life. Smell the roses, feel the grass, breath the air.
Great tempo creates greater clubhead speed.
Laugh at yourself regularly.
Things happen for a reason.
Forgive, forget and move on to the next shot.
Play one shot at a time and gather momentum.
Build confidence, don't demand it.
Prepare to win.
Visualize, visualize, visualize.
So, who has the best mental game in golf?
Many would say Tiger Woods, but he's not my pick.
Jim Furyk has a wonderful mental game. He oozes self-belief, is modest, realistic, and has a gritty determination to the envy of many a player. He manages this with the most unconventional swing in golf. He doesn't think he creates. He plays in auto-mode relying on his pre-shot routine and the hours of practice he has invested in his profession. He lays up when others shoot for gold. He plays to his strengths. He isn't bothered by a bad shot. He prepares well and most importantly Jim believes he will win, and he does.