A Blanket of Snow

As I sit looking out my front window watching the snow gently fall to the ground, I cannot not help wonder about the future of my golf game. I muse about the time I have to improve my physical health and wonder if I will ever reach my goal as a scratch golfer. It really is a restive time and I enjoy being reflective. However, 6 months is a long time to wait before the golf courses in the area open!

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Setting Golf Goals for 2015

It is that time again! It is time to set my golf goals for the upcoming season. This does not mean I have a plan yet, but it is time to set some achievable goals that I can build my plan around. Last year, I set four goals and met them with moderate success. These goals were realistic and achievable, yet one thing or another prevented me from reaching my full potential.

My partial success was due to the goals themselves. They were very…..mmmmm…..vague. Here is what I said last year:

  • get fit – focus on exercises designed to improve my golf game;
  • research – the drills and techniques required to improve my game;
  • practice – dedicate time to practice to improve my game; and
  • compete – either formally or informally compete every time I hit the links.

Realistically, I achieved all these goals with ease. Unfortunately, I did not tie a result to my goals. Thus, technically all were met, but the bar was so low, it was impossible not to succeed.

 

This year, I am trying something different. My goals will be tangible, realistic, achievable and results oriented. Here is what I am going to accomplish this year:

  • Win 1 golf tournament;
  • Make the Ontario Military Regional Golf Team;
  • Place in the top 10 at the Military National Golf Tournament;
  • Help someone become a better golfer;
  • Play 60+ rounds of golf; and
  • Become a scratch golfer!

My 2015 golf goals are quite lofty. I will have to dedicate the proper time and effort to accomplish all of them. GrowthPersonally, I love a challenge and these goals will spark the motivation I need to become a better golfer.

Finally, I will use positive intent while golfing this year. I will focus on the positive aspects of my golf game. I will objectively analyze the areas of my game that need improvement! I will gratefully accept any golf advice as it is intended.

Setting goals is a helpful way to improve your golf game. My 2015 goals are in place and my desire is strong…I am ready to succeed!

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

White Noise

I received an excellent golfing book as a present at Christmas; 365 Golf Tips and Tricks from the Pros by Jay Morelli.  This book talks about the basics, rules, sand play, equipment and much more.  It is a very quick read and the tips are concise and to the point.  I recommend it.

This very thoughtful gift started me thinking.  How do I know the difference between a good tip and well…..white noise.

White Noise - Make it Stop!Yes, we all know: white noise  does not add to the situation and drowns out the important information.  This noise can be anything from your 20 handicap playing partner advising you how he they would play the shot while you are thinking; 50 things you are trying to remember during your golf shot or the reams of information (4,930,000 hits to be exact) that that overwhelms you when searching on “how to improve my golf swing”. White noise is all around us all the time. It is a distraction that does slow anyone’s ability to improve their golf game and for $19.95 I can guarantee to improve your mental skills while playing golf….okay, just kidding. But, this is the exact type of white noise that many amateurs will here day in and day out that causes confusion.  Can it really be avoided?  Well, that depends….

Golf is a unique sport.  It is difficult and easy, played as teams and individuals at the same time, or creates inclusiveness or solidarity.  It really is the one sport where a person can play their entire life, compete against no one and yet compete every day.  Golf is a sport where a player can challenge themselves everyday and feel a sense of accomplishment after each round.  No other sport provides this type of dynamic.

Everyone has their own process to cut white noise.  Everyday, we are bombarded with information that is filter, processed, acted upon, or discarded.  The difficulty is to figure out what is important and which process works best; then apply it to golf.  For me, the process is simple:

  1. Identify the problem;
  2. Collect information on the problem;
  3. Analyse the information;
  4. Determine possible solutions or courses of action; and
  5. Decide on way ahead. (repeat as necessary and as often as needed)

Everyone does this process everyday for practically every situation.  However, some golfers looking for a quick fix seem to skip steps 2 and 3.  As an example, Player A always slice the ball off the tee.  They jump to the solution to change their grip because their 20 handicap partner noticed something.  It worked….once.  They decide to change their grip and ultimately, no success!

Instead, the process could look like this:

  1. Player A slices off the tee;
  2. Talk to local Pro or low handicap player, read about why this happens, watch golf training videos;
  3. Compare information gathered to current swing (whole swing not just a specific point);
  4. Try possible solutions on the practice range.  Try different things.  Select several possible solutions (ask local pro for help); and
  5. Decide on the best fix for Player A.

To adjust something in your golf game does take time.  This process does work (at least for me) and is very been very effective in improving my game.  The question always boils down to how much time are willing to commit to making improvements. This is the balancing act that all players must do to achieve their golfing goals.

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