Fighting The Urge To Press a Poor Situation

I can state with all certainty that every golfer has tried to press a poor situation on the golf course in the hopes of regaining form in one shot. It is nothing to be ashamed about because it is a natural urge. Unfortunately, these high risk shots have worked the odd time and thus this positive intermittent reinforce (considered a very powerful motivator my psychologists) causes poor management. I have to say, I have fell into this exact situation many times over the years. The question is how to avoid pressing a poor situation?

After years of thinking about this situation, I have come to realize what breaks down to cause me to make a poor decision. I know if I use this one skill that I have developed over the years, I will fight the urge to press a poor situation. It is very simple – use my pre-shot routine!

Yup, it is not any more complicated than that. My pre-shot routine is key to mentally preparing to make a right shot at the right time. The positive residual affects are amazing; it sets me up for success whether I make a solid swing or not. When I am committed to making a pre-shot routine, I am confident I have made the right shot selection and as a result generally shoot lower golf scores.

Annika Sorenstam best describes a pre-shot routine without adding all the idiosyncrasies that each of us have:

Fighting the urge to press a poor situation starts with a pre-shot routine. I realize there are times during a match that pressing this shot is the right choice, but I have thought about it before making the shot and weighed all the risk/reward benefits. This is a conscious choice not an emotional one.

Golf can be complicated or easy. I choose the easy route by using a pre-shot routine that is repeatable, focused, and sustainable. I helps me fight the urge to compound my mistakes by making more.

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

4 thoughts on “Fighting The Urge To Press a Poor Situation

  1. Jim, I think it’s easier to press in match play because if you blow it, it only costs you one hole. . .or the match 🙂 In stroke play, pressing can have significant consequences if you have a Tin Cup moment. You’re right about the pre-shot routine; it’s essential and keeps our mental approach and course management on the rails.

    Thanks for the reminder!


    Liked by 1 person

  2. Annika is one of the first pro’s who’s tips I sought out and paid attention to. A lesson package that includes half a round and lunch with her is a bucket list item I had to postpone when my mother in law had a stroke a few years ago. Her academy is just a few hours away. I’d almost forgot about that. But my grandparents are Swedish so my family have always been big fans.

    I haven’t forgot her advice on pre shot routine though. There is just one difference in my routine. I prefer to do my practice swings and thinking a step or teo back and in line with the ball rather than behind when possible. I only do it from behind when I chose to hit from the far left of the tee box. Something about pointing the same direction I plan to swing while performing my practice swings makes me more comfortable I guess.

    Liked by 1 person

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