Now I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions, you need to understand that right off. Why would you want to wait until the calendar changes to a new year to start doing something that you know is good for you, when you could start any time? If you know it’s right for you, do it now.
Golf is different, though. We have a season that has ended, at least for those of us who live in the cold, rainy north. It’s time to prepare for the opening of the 2011 season, which means New Year’s resolutions are OK.
The point of a resolution is to stop doing what you were doing, and start doing something else that takes you in an entirely different direction. Doing the same thing better doesn’t count. You tried all summer to do the same things better, and where did that get you?
Do something different. Do the thing(s) that you know you should be doing but haven’t had the gumption to try. Those are real resolutions.
I made my resolutions in October, and started working on them. This list includes them and a few things that have to wait for the new year.
1. Play from the red tees in January and February. The shorter course will let my hit scoring shots more often (short irons on down), and shoot better scores. The subconscious mind only knows what you shot. It doesn’t know the difference between the red tees and the whites. Or the blues. Great for your confidence.
2. Stop playing smart golf. Play the course straight up. If a particular hole demands a shot I don’t have, learn the shot instead of always letting the hole win.
3. Play different courses to get a complete golf challenge. Being good on just one course doesn’t mean you are a complete golfer.
4. Be mentally composed before very shot. Easier said than done, but imperative for playing good golf.
5. Take my game to the course. Meaning, play the shots I want to hit rather than the shots the architect wants me to hit.
6. Look at where I’m hitting into with a clear mind so I see what is really there.
7. Take playing lessons.
Seven is enough. Doesn’t have to be ten. What are yours?