I generally have an idea of how I want to play each round. I sometimes focus on specific shots, but most of the time I try to maximize my skills to match the playing conditions. However, there are some rounds where I could not hit the broad side of a barn from six yards away. It is during those rounds that I fail (miserably) to execute my great plan.
There are many reasons why I could not hit the center of the ball regardless of how much effort I put forth. As my frustration rose, my ball striking improved…..not! My game plunged into the depths of the abyss that all golfers have visited. And the trick to getting back on track is to take a page out of my old play book. I press less and let my game come back to me.
This technique is much harder than it sounds. There is a great amount of trust required to coax my swing back into its groove. As well, I have a tremendous amount of FEAR (False Evidence Appearing Real) to overcome as I hit poor shot after poor shot. Like many players, I second guess my swing, decisions, and course management. It is all part of the processes we golfers go through during the roller coaster ride during every season.
As I wait for my game to come back, I do take positive steps to help the process. My primary focus is throttle back on the aggression and try not to swing out of my shoes. You know what I mean, when our game is struggling we try to “try harder”; which equates gripping and ripping every shot. This is sure way to fail getting my game back.
So, I try to calm down, stay focused, and swing easier. This does not change my tempo, but prevents me from lunging, lifting my head, or adding a little extra to each shot. Centering my thoughts and remembering what I do well seems to help me mentally strengthen my game. This in turn seeps into the physical mechanics of playing golf. And that results in lower golf scores.
Of course I am simplifying the process, but I think you get the gist. I ease back on my efforts and let my game come to me. Fortunately, this process rarely lasts longer than a couple of rounds, but any time in the “playing terrible zone” is too long.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!