Minding Your Game Archives

Are You A Perfectionist Golfer?

Golfers who are perfectionists can struggle with low confidence in both practice and in tournaments.

angry-golfer1Perfectionists golfers demand a lot from themselves about the quality of their performance. They have high expectations which can lead to self-doubt when these players do not perform up to their high standards.

Perfectionists also have a hard time transferring the confidence they develop in practice to the course. For example, they might feel confident hitting on the range, but doubt themselves when on the course playing a round.

In addition, perfectionists often desire approval from others. They want to be accepted by parents, coaches, and friends. What wrong with that? If they don't think they are gaining approval from others, their confidence can sink.

Here's the good news about perfectionist ball players....

Perfectionists are very motivated, have a strong work ethic, are committed to their goals, and have a desire to learn and improve.

They have a good mindset for practice, which is their strength. They are willing to improve and take instruction.

But here's the bad news... Perfectionists:

  • --Lose confidence quickly not performing well
  • --Expect to perform perfectly (hit all shots perfectly)
  • --Are very self-critical of their game
  • --Tend to dwell on mistakes and missed chances
  • --Are stuck in a practice mindset, which hurts them on course

What's the solution to the problems with perfectionism?

The answer is not easy. Many golfers  fit into the category of perfectionists. I understand the challenges it presents, but perfectionist golfers do not admit it's a hindrance. They can be in denial.

The first step is to help golfers uncover the beliefs that underlie perfectionism (and keep them stuck). AND help them understand how it hurts their confidence (overcome denial).

For example, we find that players often believe they must be perfect to perform well:

"I should demand high expectations of myself because I work so hard to achieve my goals."

OR

"I need to perform perfectly today and avoid making any bogies."

As you can see, these beliefs do not help players perform their best--when not at their best.

Here's the process for changing beliefs for perfectionists:

  1. Help golfers understand the disadvantages of perfectionism and agree these absolute beliefs get in the way of performance.
  2. Uncover the beliefs and behaviors that support perfectionism and hurt confidence.
  3. Replace the unhealthy beliefs that hurt confidence with a philosophy that helps confidence grow.

Here's an example of number 3 above:

"I can perform well even when my swing does not feel or look perfect."

If YOU are a perfectionists golfer, try to buy into this new way of viewing how you perform.

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Manage Your Self Doubt on the Golf Course

sunset-golfer

Last time, I wrote  about how self-doubt can erode confidence if left to run wild in your mind.

Today, you'll learn how to stabilize confidence by managing this top confidence killer...

sunset-golferIf you uncovered your top doubts using the tip from last week, you want to take the next step today...

How to manage these doubts and banish them from your mind. It's a simple concept called cognitive reframing. This simply mean viewing your golf game in a different light and finding an alternative way of viewing situations.

Follow these three steps for reframing doubts:

1. Think back to a recent round when you doubted your ability. List the self-doubt you had at the time.

2. State each doubt above as if you are thinking out loud. Here's an example:

Doubt: "I'm unsure if I'll putt well today because the greens are do fast. I often struggle on fast greens."

3. Reframe and/or challenge each statement. Turn each doubt into a statement of confidence:

Reframe: "I've worked hard on my putting for years. I had great putting rounds in the past. I can putt well on any putting surface."

Here's an advanced strategy:

relaxing-golf2In your mind, practice rehearsing your new statements of confidence until they are well learned and easy to remember.

You'll want to apply this strategy to your practice and rounds to make it take hold:

When you first notice that you are doubting your ability, use this reframing strategy to challenge the doubt and embrace confident self-talk.

This mental game strategy will help you stabilize your confidence by reducing the amount of time you allow doubts to run unchecked in your mind!

Fragile confidence in golf equals more doubt

Do you have fragile confidence?

golf-ball-on-teeDoes you confidence go up and down depending on the outcome of your last shot or score on the hole.

We also call this the "confidence roller-coaster." This can be a big problem for golfers...

One way to keep a steady or stable level of confidence is to manage your doubts.

This means you want be aware of the thoughts, doubts, or beliefs that undermine confidence. And doubt is one of the top confidence-killers in golf.

Some golfers start doubting before they even tee it up. Golfers struggle with doubt the most after hitting a series of bad shots or making a double or worse.

The problem is you don't want doubt to unchecked in your mind. Do you even know when you are doubting your ability to hit a good shot?

The first step is awareness... You want to uncover the top doubts and negative thoughts you might have after mistakes.

And remember, when you are questioning your ability - "is my short game good enough today?" - this is a doubt in disguise.

Here a few areas to help you develop your list:

  • Self-doubt about ability to beat your competitors.
  • Questioning the quality of your practice or training.
  • Self-doubt about your physical ability such as size or strength.
  • Questioning the quality of your equipment (i.e. clubs, putter).
  • Doubts about your strategy or game plan.
  • Making comparisons to other golfers.
  • Feeling that you can never perform up to your potential.
  • Doubts about executing a specific shot.

Changing your behavior always starts with awareness. A good exercise to uncover your top doubts is to keep a log of the doubts you have -- after rounds.

Gail Smirthwaite | Golf Mind Guru

I've been planning to review the 6 CD series from the Golf Mind Guru, Gail Smirthwaite since I received them a couple of months ago so what better time to start writing my review whilst playing golf in the beautifully rugged coastline of Cape Town, South Africa.

gailsmirthwaiteGail Smirthwaite is a trainer on the CPD programme for the PGA (Professional Golf Association in the UK), a golf confidence coach, an author and golf columist. She gained her honours degree in Social Studies at the University of Sussex in Brighton and the University of California San Diego, and her full accreditation in Coaching at Wolverhampton University.Many individual tour golfers are taught by Gail including Alison Nicholas who is our ex-US Open Golf Champion and Solheim Cup UK and European Captain.

FREE Golf Hypnosis Download

With all the focus in the press recently on the mental side of golf, golfers are searching more and more for the keywords golf hypnosis download, mental golf training ,controlling nerves in golf, hypnotherapy for golf, golf mental training, but the MOST searched for term on my website at the moment is FREE audio on mental toughness and free golf hypnosis downloads.

It's no secret that in winning The Open golf last weekend that Darren Clarke has had a LOT of help from Bob Rotella, that doesn't surprise me at all, I've used Bob Rotella's golf mental psychology for YEARS and YEARS with great results.

BOB ROTELLA GOLF PSYCHOLOGY BOOKS US

BOB ROTELLA GOLF PSYCHOLOGY BOOKS UK

HOWEVER,

My post today is in response to a lot of regular visitors to my site who have actually written to me to say how much they have enjoyed the free golf hypnosis download that I offer, I must say though, that it IS one of my all time favorite golf mental downloads , the guy's voice is SO similar to Sean Connery that it is extremely relaxing and who better to help with controlling nerves in golf than 007 himself!!!   WELL, ALMOST!!!!!  ( NO--IT IS NOT SEAN CONNERY! 😉 )
SO, due to the many request to make this particular golf hypnosis download more visible on my site here is access to it again:

POSTSCRIPT:

As I was testing out the free golf hypnosis download process, I downloaded it again to make sure the links are correct etc and I had it playing while I'm working on my site, LOL
It's SO HYPNOTIC, I had to switch it off so I could concentrate.
I'll listen to it again later when I take a break. 😉

ENJOY!

HEY, if you like the download, please leave a message to let me know what you think , if it proves to be really popular I'll add MORE free golf metal downloads.
Thanks
😉

FREE Golf Hypnosis Download

Golf Mental Training

I LOVE the voice in this FREE golf mental training download, it's 27 minutes of sheer relaxation, is it REALLY SEAN CONNERY?

Well, NO, IT's NOT Sean , but why not let your mind wander that extra step!

007 in your head

ON THE GOLF COURSE, at times of mental golfing stress?

I'll go for THAT!

Left Handed Golf club Auctions

Golf Audio Coaching- Awakening Your Golf Mind

The first listening of Wade Pearse's Audio Coaching Session:

Before I started working with  Wade Pearse's Golf Mental Training Course,  I was looking for a way to bring enjoyment back into my golf game, you can read my story here, I won't repeat it here as I want to get on with my review of this course.

My thoughts towards golf last year were negative and quite honestly miserable and joyless.  Playing golf  had become a boring chore and as much as I enjoyed the company of my club teammates and playing partners, I had no enjoyment for the game at all. The less I wanted to play, the less I practised, and of course, the worse my game became and the cycle of misery continued for the whole of the year.

At the beginning of this year however, I decided that I've put so much time and effort into my golf game over the past 12 years that I want to get back to playing golf and decided to do something about it.

I've reviewed lots of golf hypnosis downloads and a lot of them are really good as you will see from the reviews on this site.

However, I need more than individual golf hypnosis downloads to bring about the shift in my mentality I'm looking for.

I've known about Wade Pearse's Golf Mental Game Training Program for quite some time and I've always liked the concept of having a whole course based around improving your mental attitude and mental strengths so I've chosen Wade's course to bring about my rehab.

As Wade says in his course material:"Every golfer has heard the saying "It's all in your head" or "Golf is 90% mental" or "Golf is the most mentally demanding sport in the world." Yet what do golfers do about it? Well, most often absolutely nothing! Not necessarily because they don't want to, but sometimes golfers actually think the mental game doesn't matter to them!"

For me, the most important step has already been taken, I've made the decision that I WANT to do something about my attitude and I am GOING to get back my enjoyment of the game, so, THIS is where I'm at.

GOLF MENTAL TRAINING COURSE

Now, after my first listening of the first part of the audio coaching session called " Awakening Your Golf Mind" I know I've made the right decision to follow this course.

My Review of the first part of the audio coaching session called " Awakening Your Golf Mind":

Firstly, I have to say that the sound of the voice on any audio training session is SO important for the overall enjoyment and effectiveness of the session , it's no good if the  speaker has an accent that you can't understand, or the timbre of the voice grates on the nerves, or it's too high or too low, Wade's voice passes that test with flying colours, he has a deep, soft relaxing voice with an 'easy on the ears' slight Canadian accent that enters the subconscious mind very easily and gently.

( If there are any ladies reading this by the way, you will like Wade's voice, GUARANTEED! ! ) Anyway, I digress ! 😉

The subject of this audio session is to create the right frame of mind to enjoy playing golf and to play successfully, that the aim of playing is NOT about ONLY the score, but about getting into a comfortable and relaxed state of mind so that you play at your optimum mental levels and that way, everything else , scores, results etc, will happen naturally.

He takes you through a short breathing exercise before leading you into a deeply relaxed state and talks about how to sustain the feeling of comfort and relaxation throughout your game, ( getting into and staying in the zone, as the old cliche goes ).

He encourages you to bring to mind how it felt when you were playing golf really well, and to visualise the scene around you, the colours, the sounds, the feelings you had, the confidence you felt ( all successful NLP techniques of course) . The more you listen to this audio session, the easier it becomes to utilise the techniques on the golf course. To me, if I can come off the course feeling content and happy with my game, whatever the result, it's worth it's weight in gold!

Watch out for my review of the 2nd audio session for Wade Pearse's Golf Mental Game Coaching Program, I'm looking forward to it!



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Learn To Control Your Mental State

Most golfers are at the mercy of their constantly changing states, or personal frame of mind.

That’s, because most people don’t know how to control the way they feel.

Their state is usually determined by what is happening in the outside world or their perception of it – their personal map of reality.

If it is a nice sunny day they feel good.

If the golf ball is “behaving itself” they feel confident.

If the person they are playing with is to their liking they feel happy.

The way they feel, their state, is controlled by external events - events that are beyond their control.

However, we don't have any control over external factors such as these.

You can train yourself to control your 'mental state' , you can develop the ability to get into the right state, at the right time, for the task or experience at hand is key.

THIS is the fundamental difference between golfers who play well and golfers who let thngs that they CANNOT control affect their state of mind.

GOLF MENTAL GAME TRAINING COURSE

Step 1

Step 1: Imagine you’ve just hit a really bad golf shot, maybe one that costs you a couple of shots. Remember what you said to yourself and most importantly what you felt. What state were you in then and how do you feel thinking about it? Now forget about that shot completely. It never happened.

Though golf is mostly a game that requires natural and inherent physical capability, anyone who has played it at a high level can tell you just how the psychological side of the game is even more important, in fact, many people say that the mental side of golf can account for 90% of your golf performance !

Just about all golfers have hit that perfect shot more than once in their lives and MOST golfers are able to drive itstraight and sink those long  putts. However,  what keeps those players back is a combination of nervousness, lack of focus, low energy, and random lapses in focus.

With that in mind, golf mental coaching enables you to beat back these kinds of common difficulties and unleash the top quality golfer within.

Golf mental training by using hypnosis

One of the things that may continuously hold a golfer back is really a problem with their sub-conscious thoughts. Most golf players are controlled by their anxieties and those worries naturally dominate when they stand over a putt or when they're at the very first tee.

Hypnosis will help a golfer in a number of ways.

Accessing  the unconscious mind and sorting through the issues there can allow golfers to improve endurance, harness natural strength, and increase long-range hand-eye co-ordination.

Exterior distractions can be entirely removed from the equation, which will enable players to operate at their strongest possible levels.

On the list of significant issues is a rise in self-confidence, which can result in more reliable swing planes for competitors of all levels.

Golf mental coaching withNeuro linguistic programming

NLP - or Neuro Linguistic Programming - is used in a variety of fields to help people get on the right track. Neuro linguistic programming for golfers can help golf players particularly by eliminating those subconscious concerns that they don't have any control over.

We've ALL  hit plenty of excellent shots on the range prior to a round, but whenever we stand over the ball on the very first tee, we  are often wracked by nerves.

Possibly by a fear of failure that is deep-rooted, who knows.

These issues can be helped and effectively improved with NLP.

Simply speaking, by incorporating NLP techniques into their golf game, players are hard-wired for success.

Think about exactly what it might be like walking out onto the golf course with a free mind and with a boat load of self-confidence.

That is what golf psychological training is able to do for you.

Many players just accept  the belief that they cannot conquer their worries. They drop strokes and waste their potential on the golf course, simply because they don't understand the way to deal with nerves and lack of golfing confidence.

With some of the modern golf mental training methods it is absolutely possible and HIGHLY LIKELY to drop strokes and turn playing golf into a positive experience all around.

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Golf Rehab: Round 1

So, today was my first day back on my home course after spending the past month in the Middle East playing on a rock hard dry course. My home golf course is in the UK, just outside London and needless to say, quite a difference in conditions to the sun baked course, today the course was wet and soggy, it was also freezing cold but I had so many layers on I was immune to the cold.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, I didn't enjoy playing golf last year, in fact, most of my rounds I wanted to be any where else but on a golf course.

This year, I WANT to play, and THAT is the difference. My golfing mindset is TOTAlly different! I missed playing with my team mates, our handicaps range between 10 and 14 and we're quite a competitive group.

My handicap is 13 at the moment, I used to be 10 but it has slowly crept up, ( see my handicap explanation here ).

I didn't start my round too well, but kept mentally VERY positive and kept patient.

Here's my score today, I'll use this as a benchmark for future rounds:

Par 4 4 4 3 4 3 5 4 5 36 4 3 4 4 5 4 3 4 5 36 72
My Score 7 7 5 4 5 5 5 7 6 51 4 3 5 5 5 6 3 7 6 44 95

Well, at least I kept below 100! My back 9 was MUCH better than my front round and I was striking the ball really well once I got used to the mud and slush on the course.

What was important today was that I kept postitive the whole time and I didn't let the bad shots 'get to me' I literally played just one shot at a time and didn't think backwards or forwards.

A good start to my year and most importantly I enjoyed the round.

Next step for me is to start listening to the golf mental training downloads from the training course.

More on that next...................

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