Is there such a thing- a happy golfer?! Well, maybe it’s easy to be a happy golfer when you are swinging well and making good contact with the ball. But it’s not so easy to be happy when you miss, duff or shank shots and you feel embarrassed, and possibly mortified. I’ve been there…several times. I cannot count the amount of times I have felt mortified on the golf course, embarrassed that i am not playing the way that I know I can, angry at myself for not being better and feeling bad that I am letting my foursome down if we are in a charity event and I have been brought in as a ringer. And I am a really good golfer! I actually stopped playing golf for a while because it was no fun anymore. I told myself that I stopped because I was too busy, but really it was because I was tired of the negative emotions. The ironic part is that I actually consider myself a really positive person! I need to be happier on the golf course, I needed some reframing. And it worked. Putting things into perspective made me realize that the only person that cared how I played was me. I was creating the negative feelings and therefore I had the power to create more positive experiences. I also realized that I was not alone, and that a lot of golfers beat themselves up unrealistically on the golf course, so I changed my teaching and learning style. I added reframing to all my lessons.
When you watch golf, you watch the pros hit pretty good shots a lot of the times, but you also see them miss terribly and hit some horrible shots. These are folks who practise and play almost every single day. So when we hit a bad shot and we play 5 times a year, is it realistic to get down on ourselves? When playing the game of golf, your goal is to get the ball in the hole – there is no rule that states the ball must get air, or that it must go straight! The aim of the game is to advance the ball till it gets into the hole in the least number of strokes as possible for your ability. So if I hit a “worm burner” or a “snake killer” or a “grounder” and it goes forward, then I have advanced the ball , and instead of chastising myself for not hitting a perfect shot, I can celebrate in my good fortune at advancing the ball. The angrier and more frustrated you get on the golf course, the tenser your shoulders get and the worse you will swing- guaranteed! Besides, no one enjoys playing with someone who is angry and frustrated. Learn to laugh at yourself a little, reframe your thinking and be the person everyone wants in their foursome.