How to get real improvement in your golf game – part 2
In case you missed part 1, you can go read it here: improve your golf game – part 1
Now to continue on with the story…
My first drive is perfect. I can’t ask for more. What do I do? Instantly after watching my ball land right where I want it to and as I walk towards it, I am reminding myself of what made that happen, namely, my plan I told you about in part 1.
I followed my plan to the letter. I did exactly what I said I would. I got the result I wanted. I felt totally empowered. I told myself that I got it now. I replayed that shot over and over in mind as I walked to the ball. I talked to my unconscious mind and thanking it for pulling the “280 yard straight shot” file from the filing cabinet in my mind. I told it that I wanted that again and again…all day. I went over an over in mind what went right. I filled my thoughts with “this is how I play” and “this is how I drive the ball.” Etc.
And…I’m smiling all the way as I keep walking to the ball.
I get up to my second shot and it’s about 70 yards to the pin. Great, no problem. I know what to do here as well. I know that my sand wedge will go 70 yards at about a 3/4 backswing. I figure that out a couple years ago when I took a bucket of balls down to the schoolyard while the kids were out and I placed a rag at 30, 50, and 70 yards out and then hit while only observing how far back I take my backswing. You really only have to do this once and it pays off for years.
Now, the problem for me wasn’t my distance on approach shots. The problem was hitting the darn thing straight. Standing over the ball, I re-committed my entire mind and energy to what I had been working the last 2 days…square and point.
I took a look at the pin and used that target to draw an imaginary line to my ball. I squared my body up to that target line. I went through my preshot routine like religious monk in prayer. I NEVER LOOKED AT THE TARGET AGAIN. I didn’t have to!
Yes, I know, this goes contrary to popular golf advice for score improvement. Everyone says to be “target oriented” and so do I. But, you see, at my level of play and for 90% or more of all recreational golfers JUST PICKING A TARGET AND FOCUSING ON IT ISN’T ENOUGH. We need to have an intermediate, simple instruction between the target and our swing that bridges that gap.
That “bridge” is the 12-18 inches of imaginary target line from the ball to the target.The simple instruction I give to my unconscious mind is to “square the club face at the point of impact and point it (or “follow it” if you like that better) down the target line”
I hit to about 10 yards from the pin, I lip out my putt and tap in for an easy par.
My son, on the other hand, is in big trouble having hit his shot into the lateral hazard. He pulls out a bogey and I can see the sweat starting to bead on his forehead as says “nice hole Dad” to me…and we go to the next hole.
I end up following my plan to near perfection. I end up the day with NO DOUBLE bogeys and 1 birdie. I shoot a 79 playing strictly by the rules of golf and I win the bet. I’m very excited! I’ve got my game back!!! Woohoo!!!
My son owes me 12 hours of labor. What do you think I should have him do for me? 🙂
Car washes? Clean my clubs? Clean my house and toilets!, Yes, that’s it…hahaa.
I don’t rub any of it in with him. At the end of the round, I’m a good sport and I put my arm around him and remind him of some great shots he made.
We go out to beer and pizza afterward and have a good laugh about the round and the funny things we said and did that day. We love golf. We love the camaraderie that goes with the game. We love the competition whether it’s with someone else or with just ourselves to beat our personal best. We love the outdoors and we love the game itself.
I go to bed that night in total gratitude…
The next day, in the car on the ride home, I ask my son what his plan was for fixing what went wrong with his game. He gave me the typical teenager “I don’t know” answer.
We had a long talk and I helped him devise it. He says he is committed to the plan…we’ll see
We’re playing tomorrow.
I’ll let you know.
Greens and fairways,
p.s. This just came in from one of my golfselfhypnosis.com members:
“Thank you so much. I’ve really been helped with my golf game. Having
been a therapist for several years before I retired and got to play
more golf, I’ve seen what hypnosis can do. I usually shoot in the low
100s, but after listening to that one time I shot a 92. I’ll be sure
to keep it going. I hope any of the older women will go with it. I’m 68 and
it’s great to play better!
Katharine Abbott, Ph.D., Provo UT