Par3golfer's Blog


Mental Golf Game

Hi my friends

Spring has sprung, although you wouldn’t know it by looking out the window today!! I know we are all looking forward to the sun and warmer [Golf] temperatures. The one nice thing about lousy weather days is that it gives me the chance to catch up on some things I don’t always get to. Today is no exception!

Periodically, I receive something in my inbox that I really believe is worthy of sharing with you. Michael Anthony is a prolific author on golf  and he is a great resource.  I love his emphasis on the mental game of golf– our minds are very powerful and can lead us to achieve greatness– on all areas of our lives, not just golf. Please take a minute and see what I mean about this!

Rick Jones

Cape May Par 3 & Driving Range

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MENTAL TIP by MICHAEL ANTHONY

“Fear Can Not Exist In The Present”

I have been interviewed on radio talk shows around the country. Many of the hosts who have read my book “The Mental Keys” commented about my statement that fear can not exist in the present. They had never looked at fear in that light. But, they all acknowledged that the concept makes total sense.

I have consulted with athletes in many different sports from Olympic Gold Medalists to low and high handicap golfers. All of them admitted that fear was public enemy number one on their list of negative emotions. Since an athlete, golfers especially, can not deny the reality of the mind/body connection, it is easy for them to realize that fear causes their performance to diminish. They, also, readily acknowledge that when thay are performing at their best they are not thinking. They are playing on instinct.

When an athlete experiences fear, he/she is thinking about a future outcome that has not occurred. Fear about an outcome triggers adverse chemical changes in your brain, which cause your performance to deteriorate. Because of the mind/body connection fear makes it impossible to duplicate the same stroke mechanics that you have when you are relaxed.

If you think about it, fear can not exist in the present. Since you can only physically exist in the present, you only have control of the present. In the present all one can do is execute at their curent level of proficiency. How well you control the present, determines the future outcome — good or bad. It is only when you think about a future outcome that fear enters the equation and throws off your performance.

The vast majority of individuals have spent their entire life chasing the outcome. However, you can train your mind to ignore the outcome and stay in the present by focusing on mastering the process. This is a major cultural change for anyone brought up in the Western civilization’s belief system of materialism and winning. Ignoring the outcome is a huge undertaking, but it can be accomplished.

In contrast, the philosophy of Zen is based solely on being the process — be the ball. In the Eastern culture, centuries ago, samurai warriors were highly skilled in the martial arts. To be at their best, they were trained to fight without the fear of dying. Golf is a game! Golf is not a life or death situation. So have fun and relax.

Learn to have fun on the golf course and train your mind to stay in the present. If you do, you will have less fear and your scores will fall.

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