Owning our golf shot is one of the most difficult aspects of playing. We keep score and because of this do not always take ownership of our score. Golfers will forever blame as many outside influences to their poor luck as possible. I have done this in the past, but rarely do I do now; I generally react to a poor result with some frustration, but do not blame anyone but myself. Of course, I do not mind pointing fingers at my playing partners from time to time, but that is for fun than anything else. 🙂
It is important to receive your fate with an air of acceptance. When we continually look for outside influences to blame, it gets in our head and mentally makes us a less effective player. I remember playing in a stroke tournament years ago where this specific situation resulted in the collapse of my opponent.
It started on the ninth green (actually is was simmering before that). This particular green is close to the parking lot and because of this there is always an excessive amount of noise from people coming and going from the course. Just as my opponent was about to hit his putt, someone slammed their car door. This sudden noise resulted in the breaking of his concentration. He backed off and proceeded to miss his three foot. He said some words that cannot be repeated on this blog; he was fuming as he walked to the 10th tee.
On each of the next 4 holes, he complained about a bad bounce, other noises (that were not really there), bugs, the wind, and the other three players in the group. Each time he complained, he became more frustrated and anger. After a couple of bogeys and doubles, he could have spit nails. The real challenge was he did not own any shot and continued to blame every thing/one but himself.
My opponent finished well back from the top of the leaderboard and continue complaining until he left. Mentally, he was trashed by the car door slamming and he multiplied his misfortune by not owning his next shots. As such, he never regained his swing for the entire back nine. It actually was unfortunate because he was in the top 5 when he focused on blaming outside influences and not owning his shots.
So, regardless of what happens on the golf course, it is important for us to own our shots and results. Pointing your finger at all other influences can on compound your frustration.
I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!