Success Breeds Success

Success Breeds Success is a common theme in all areas of life. The main tenet suggests that positive results are built by a set by step process of small successful actions. Golf is no different. Talk to any professional and they could outline how, from a very early age, an orchestrated plan of baby steps resulted in long-term success. With encouragement and training they were able to live the dream of playing golf for a living!

Talk to an amateur and the story is completely different. Although their desire to play well is as strong as a professional’s, yet the process to success is more challenging. It becomes more difficult because the process of small successful actions is not easy to envision or achieve. Why is it so difficult? How do amateurs determine what is important and what is white noise?

Slide1This is the time when most articles would point out that at the core level, practicing your short game, grooving a swing at the range, and focused putting are extremely important to lowering your golf score. Many would espouse which skill would be the most important or a diatribe on fundamentals; yet really not touch on how success breeds success.

So how does success breed success in golf. Finding out what works and does not work when swinging a club is definitely a great place to start… and that takes time.  Practicing different strokes at the practice green and the driving range would be the next step. Lastly, focusing on course management would help develop great habits. I could go on, but really all I have to say now is – make the madness stop…please make it stop!!!!

Success breeds success is simpler than that; for amateur golfers it breaks down to one important area: support. Amateurs can find support from a friend, support from their local professional, and support from your golfing buddies. These are all great places to start the baby step process to achieving lower scores in golf. Support is very important.

Lastly, there is one other area amateurs seek for support: golfing websites. Before I started The Grateful Golfer, I searched many golf blogs and websites to see what they had to offer. Some of the sites immediately peaked my interest and others turned me off forever. What surprised me the most is the mountain of support, advice, tips and great golfing stories. I believe that my interaction with many of the authors has drastically improved my game and help weed out the white noise.  If you are curious, here are just some of my favorites:

This is not a complete list, but I believe you will get the point once you take a look. To me, one of the most interesting aspects of these sites is that they are around the world.  Each author offers something unique about golf, but the one thing they all have in common is support for fellow golfers!

Success breeds success! The first step towards developing your plan to become a better golfer is to find the support you need to succeed!

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links….real soon!

 

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!