I got a new book today, by Dr. Gio Valiante and Mike Stachura.
One chapter into I would considering recommending it. When I look at the differences when I am able to pull off great shots and when I’m not there does seem to be an element of fear in it. I think a lot of pressure comes from fear; fear of losing, fear of looking foolish, fear of slicing, fear of hooking, fear of hitting it fat, etc.
Do you ever notice when you are practicing that effortlessly a lot of shots come off great. Your chips are closer to the hole with several going in, your putts are firm, on line and track right in, your drives are long and straight? Then you get on the course and that ease is gone…
I think a big reason is that there are now consequences, penalty shots, lost balls (OB or in hazards), difficult lies etc. All of these things that can go wrong creep into your thoughts unless you are determined to keep a strong mindset. But like Dr. Valiante says, we actually get the fear response before we can even consciously recognize it. If we don’t do anything about it when we do recognize it (hopefully before we swing), then it’s too late.
The next time I go out to play, I’m going to make a point of approaching every shot with confidence and certainty that I can pull it off. Obviously it is unlikely that I’ll pull off every shot, but going into it confident that I can will make a big difference.