Golfing is a complex sport. Regardless of the endless claims by experts trying to simplify this game, I do not believe golf can be boiled down to any one thing. There are too many moving parts, varying situations and an endless pitfalls during every stroke. Therefore, trying to find that golden nugget is like trying to separate the wheat from the chaff. However, I think that developing singularity of focus can help lower your golf scores and yesterday, I was able to do this very thing.
After only golfing once last week, I decided not to panic about any of the challenges I am currently facing. The reason for my calm attitude is that it is still way to early to make any adjustments. However, it is not too early to start working on my whole game and as such, I like to have something to focus on while playing. Yesterday, I decided to focus on keeping my ball in play off the tee.
As discussed earlier, being able to play well off the tee is very important. It obviously sets up the rest of the hole and empowers my positive mental game. As a carry over from last year, I had it in my mind that I was struggling off the tee and this negative thought pattern produced negative results. So, before I teed it up, I knew it was time for a slight adjustment in my thoughts.
Standing on the first tee, actually I made the decision before I pulled out my first club, I decided to focus on the ‘less is more’ mantra. A driver should be swung with comfort. I knew I had a tendency to over swing while on the tee and so I forced myself to mentally relax and let the club do all the work.
I achieved very good results hitting 12 of 18 fairways. For an early season start, that was very solid. The 4 misses were in play with two being difficult second shots. As a result, my goal of a focusing on a single area of my game was successful. Additionally, the success off the tee set up my approach shots to the green (I know this was obvious, but sometimes it is important to state it anyway). Overall, I found that the positive effects of focusing on a consistent shot off the tee is something I will continue for the next few rounds.
Right about now, you are thinking that I am just rambling. And you might be right, however, if you think about my message, you will see that my point goes deeper than just hitting the ball well off the tee. My success yesterday was as much about hitting quality golf shots as mentally preparing to play well. Focusing on a single point in my golf game happened before I even hit the links. I as shaping my success in my mind and visualizing playing well. By carrying over my thought processes to the course helped create the foundation for success during yesterday and future rounds.
Most aspects of golf are connected. Even the little things have the ability to impact our whole game. As you move forward to your next round, pick a single focus early and start to think about how to make it work in your game. Then, watch the positive the positive second and third order of effects; you will be surprised how well this process works and the immediate results you will see on your scorecard.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!