Your mind is your biggest asset on the golf course, but only if you use it in the right way. When you’re assessing your shot, thinking about it, weighing the options logically, is the wrong way, but that’s probably what you do. Instead, take a more intuitive approach. Let the part of your mind that knows what to do make your decision.
The problem a golf shot presents to us is how to project an action into a defined space. We’re doing something here that shows up over there. The question is, what should we do, and what is the easiest way to do it? Reverse that process. Look at the course without judging and let the course project a shot back to you.
Look at the course in the area of where your next shot should end up. Just look, without judging. In a few seconds you will become aware of the shot to hit, and how to hit it.
You won’t visualize it, like a movie. Your mind mind creates a wordless knowing, unaccompanied by an embedded or overlaid visual impression. That strong impression moves out of your mind to be literally felt in your body. It is also accompanied by great confidence.
I use this process with great success everywhere, but especially around and on the green, where there are so many options to choose from for the same shot. A few weeks ago, my ball was just off the green. I looked at the shot and said to myself, “9-iron.” But I usually chip with a sand wedge in this situation, so I got out my sand wedge.
I took a practice stroke, and thought, “No, it’s a 9-iron.” I put the wedge back in the bag, took out the 9-iron, stood over the ball and just let the shot come to me as i described above — where to hit the ball and how hard. I hit a gentle chip, and the ball curved into the hole.
I could tell you many stories about driving, approaching, and putting where this technique has paid off famously. It doesn’t mean the ball will go into the hole from wherever you are, or that you’ll hit every fairway or every green. We are human, we make mistakes in execution.
But it does mean that you’ll play much better than you thought you could. Quiet your thinking mind to let your intuitive mind tell you what to do. You’ll be pleasantly surprised.
Interested? My latest book, The Golfing Self, gives you detailed instruction on how to train your mind to play this way. You’re a better golfer right now than you think you are. Find out how to let your true ability emerge by using your mind correctly.