Archived Newsletters - Goal Setting:
Dear Golf Friend,
PMI is pleased to provide this free electronic newsletter, Mental Coaching
for Golf to give you information for balancing your mind-body-spirit so you
can play golf effortlessly, free from distractions, trusting your swing,
confident, focused, and enjoying the game much more!
Thanks for subscribing. Every two weeks you will receive new tips and
insightful information to develop a winner's mentality for your golf game
and your everyday life.
Now that all the Y2K hubbub is over, what have we learned? We have learned that preparation for what you want to happen is important. Worrying about what you don't want to happen is non-productive and just adds stress to your mind-body-spirit. It is the same in golf. Prepare your mind and body for the game you want.
January is the month of new beginnings. As we enter not only a new year, but a new millennium, it is the perfect opportunity to make a new beginning and develop the golf game you have dreamed of that will pay the most dividends for you. We all know that New Year's resolutions don't last very long. This is because they are formed and controlled in your conscious mind. It is called will power. Golf isn't a matter of will. Being in control of your golf swing is a matter of trusting the training you have done, and allowing your subconscious mind to respond to that training. So, let's start at the beginning and develop a plan for success. In sports psychology it is called goal setting.
Step 1 is to know why you play golf.
Why do you play golf? Why do you spend 4-6 hours of your precious time playing golf? Most golfers take up the game for certain reasons and then find after awhile they are playing for different reasons. Exercise, enjoyment, sociability, sunshine, competition are all given as reasons to play. Yet, often golfers lose sight of their original intent and get distracted by things such as friendly advice, advertising, reading too much instruction, or media hype.
Golf is not really about winning and losing. It is about learning about yourself and how to become successful. Golf is a metaphor for empowerment, a metaphor for concentration, a metaphor for the strength we all have but we don't think we do.
What do you want from the game of golf? What do you want from yourself when you play golf? The first step is to decide on your own personal motives. The choice is yours, whether you want to play for yourself or for someone else's reasons.
Step 2 is to formulate a plan for accomplishing your purpose.
To drive from New York to Florida requires a map or a plan. Without a plan you might wind up in Chicago. There are several possible routes to take; some shorter/ some longer, some easier/more tedious. Formulate a plan to arrive at your destination the easiest, most enjoyable way. The same is true with your golf plan. Formulate a plan that you will enjoy executing on a daily/weekly basis. The enjoyment of golf is in the process of accomplishing, not in the end result itself.
Step 3 is having a way to measure your success.
When you arrive in Florida, or achieve your goal, you can then decide if that is what you want. All golfers have had rounds where they hit the ball well and scored poorly, or hit the ball poorly and scored well. In which scenario do you have the most enjoyment? Thinking only that shooting low scores will bring you the most enjoyment is the route to failure. To lower your handicap and play better is an ongoing process which begins with enjoying yourself, which then results in lower scores.
Step 4 is acknowledging your success.
If your goal was to win a particular tournament and you fail, acknowledge that the training you put into that effort was successful. There is only one announced winner in each tournament, but your efforts will lead you to another, perhaps bigger win. Because of all of the uncontrollable factors, you have no control over what will happen in our future and can only put forth your best effort, which makes you a winner.
Now is the time to program your golf game for this year and the future. Your current thoughts are going to create your future. Program your computer brain with the software package that will give you the results you want.
In order to set good goals, you must be able to measure your success; they must be meaningful to you; they must be under your control, they must be positive, and they must be reachable.
Your Y2K Plan for Successful Golf:
"Watch your thoughts, they become words; watch your words, they become actions; watch your actions, they become your habits; watch your habits, they become character; watch your character, for it becomes your destiny." --Frank Outlaw
- Set up your goals so that you can't wait to get started on them.
- Set a date to give yourself enough time so you won't feel pressured.
- Make a list for each goal about how you are going to accomplish it.
- Set a pace that is comfortable so you won't feel any anxiety.
- Acknowledge the smallest successes. If you take care of the small goals, the larger ones will just happen.
- When you accomplish the goal, congratulate yourself on the success.
- Set a new goal.
Best Wishes for a Happy New Year and a New Millennium full of Peace, Serenity, natural enjoyment of yourself and others during your golf adventures.