Overcoming Adversity on the Golf Course


Can you handle adversity?  We face it regularly in our daily lives.  The better we become at handling adversity, the more likely we are to be successful.  The same holds true in golf.  The better you are at handling adversity on the golf course, the more successful you are likely to be.

Adversity on the golf course can come in many shapes and sizes.  Perhaps the weather is effecting your play, or the noise from airplanes flying above is disturbing your concentration, or maybe you just can’t stand playing with somebody in your group.  Whatever the case may be, you have the ability to overcome it all.

Golf is never going to be perfect.  On those days when you finally seem to figure out your driver, your putting lapses.  The next time out, you feel as though you can’t miss a putt.  Meanwhile, your driver feels like a lead pipe.  That’s golf, and it’s why we love this game one day, and hate it the next!

Perhaps the most frustrating adversity to overcome for many players is noise.  Personally, noise doesn’t bother me.  Perhaps that’s because I played golf for 5 years on a golf course near an airbase.  Every few minutes, jets would fly right over us.  Of course, the noise was only as loud as the quality of golf I happened to be playing that day.  When I was playing well, the noise was muffled.  However, when I was playing poorly, those jets produced the loudest noise I had ever heard!

A great way to block out the noise surrounding you on the golf course is to create a routine.  Your routine could be anything.  A waggle of the club, a couple of deep breaths, or even a few steady taps in your feet.  Whatever it is, make sure you repeat it every time.  By repeating your routine, your mind will be less effected by the noise, and you will stay in the moment of your shot.

Another way to overcome adversity on the golf course is to ACCEPT POOR SHOTS!  It always amazes me when I see higher handicapped golfers beating themselves up because they hit their tee shot into the trees.  An example I often use with my players is to imagine a professional and an amateur teeing off together on the same hole.  Both players miss their tee shot to the right of the fairway.  Upon reaching his second shot, the pro looks back and notices the amateur still standing on the tee box trying to figure out why his tee shot went to the right!  Learn to accept poor shots!  You will put far less pressure on yourself, and your game will most definitely improve as a result.

Adversity on the golf course is common.  The better players learn to overcome it, while the lesser players crumble under its influence.  Which side will you choose?

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