I’m sure that most of you have heard the message of “staying in the moment” when it comes to your golf games. The idea is to focus only on the shot you are about to hit. Forget about the last shot, and don’t worry about what’s coming up later in the round. Focus on the “now.” This is great advice. However, I’d like for you to begin spending some time focusing, not only on the shot at hand, but on the shot that is next. It’s time to understand the importance of planning ahead. I often witness golfers trying to smash their golf ball towards the green, even though there is little chance of reaching the green with their shot. I’m sure many of you can relate. The problem with this is that you are not doing a good job on anticipating the difficulty of the approach shot you are leaving yourself into the green. Professional golfers are great at planning ahead. When they are laying up short of a green, they make it a point to leave themselves a comfortable distance to the hole for their next shot. Another example of planning ahead is to hit your shot to the side of the fairway that will leave you the easiest approach shot to the green. By learning to plan ahead in your golf game, you will become much more focused on the shot at hand, because you are preparing yourself for the next shot. To take full advantage of planning ahead in your game, it is important that you spend time observing where the hole location is on the green. If the hole is located on the left side of the green, you should plan ahead to hit your ball towards the right side of the green. This will leave you an easier chip shot. If you were to leave your ball to the left side of the green, your chip shot will be more difficult because you have “short-sided” yourself. The two biggest factors in planning ahead in your golf game are to understand the distance you are hoping to have for your approach shot, and paying attention to the hole location so that you can leave yourself the easiest chip shot. The better you become at planning ahead in your golf game, the easier the game will be. Playing good golf means to simplify the shots you are attempting to hit. By planning ahead, the game will begin to feel much simpler.