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Newsletter August 2011

What distracts you from playing your best golf?

Tiger Woods has announced that he will be back on Tour competing next week in the World Golf Championships-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone CC in Akron, Ohio. After 3 months of rehab on his left knee he has just recently been hitting golf balls. Is he mentally and physically strong enough to compete at the highest levels?

It is now two years since I had bi-lateral knee surgery; the total replacement of both knees. The pain in my knees before and after surgery has kept me from playing golf all that time. Because of my love of the game, and like Tiger I had medical approval, I decided in May that I would begin to play once a week and tolerate the pain. Although Tiger hasn't played in tournaments in a few months, I can commiserate with his situation.


When I began practicing and playing I began a process of mentally remembering my swing coordination and attempting to translate it into a feeling. On the course I would remember my swing faults and notice when they would cause errant shots. Like most golfers I would analyze them and attempt to change them in my practice sessions and on-course. I didn't lack confidence as I had the experience of remembering winning. The pain was my main distraction as it caused physical tiredness. My main goals were to just finish 18-hole rounds. Last week in the extreme heat instead of thinking about my swing, I focused on the things that I teach; rhythm, focus on the shot at hand, visualization, a consistent pre-shot & post-shot routine, relaxation, and deep breathing. My mind no longer distracted me and I played in the zone, with my mind-body-emotions in sync, enjoying shooting an easy 80.


A transformation is a complete change in something or someone. To move into the zone state requires a psychological transformation of your thoughts, beliefs, and resulting emotions. Here are some examples of recent pro golfer transformations.

Phil Mickelson

Phil Mickelson, a magician around the greens has played in 17 British Opens finishing no higher than 11th place. His high flying shots were not conducive to the low flying shots necessary in the wind on the European links courses.

This year he went to The Open having changed his beliefs about not winning. At Royal St. George's, Sandwich, England he stated, "I'm  trying to pretend like it's my first time here and to appreciate playing the ball on the ground and enjoy the challenge of links golf. I feel excited to. . .learn this style." He finished 3rd in greens in regulation. Phil said, "I hit some of the best shots I've hit in the wind. Not just today but really all week." He reinforced his new belief by smiling throughout the tournament in spite of the 35mph wind or sideways rain. He finished 3 strokes behind the winner Darren Clarke. Mickelson said,” That was some of the most fun I've had competitively."

Yani Seng

22-year-old Taiwan Yani Seng, just won the women's LPGA British Open and became the youngest player ever to win five major tournaments. She successfully defended her title in spectacular fashion with a final round 69, 16 under par, four strokes ahead of American Brittany Lang. "It is a great honor to win the British Open again," said Tseng. "There is so much history attached to this course. I felt more comfortable this year because I learning all the time. My mental game is so much better."
When Yani stopped pushing herself to win more tournaments she released the self-imposed pressure and was able to enjoy playing once again.

Darren Clarke

At age 42, Darren Clarke is a strong ball-striker who was labeled an underachiever because he had never won a major tournament. He was ranked 111th in the world going into the Open Championship. He was emotionally down after shooting a 75 in the last round of the Scottish Open. Bob Rotella, his mental coach helped him to clear his mind of these mental distractions. They focused on Darren letting go of thinking and trying, and putting unconsciously. When he putts well he is happy and it affects the rest of his game so he can play unconsciously. Everyone will agree that he was a transformed golfer as he won the Open 3 shots ahead of Phil. Clarke said, "I want to keep going. I still feel as if I can compete with the best players in the world."

Play “In the Zone” With Joan


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© Copyright PMI 2011. All Rights Reserved.

If you want to learn how to play unconsciously “in the zone” to easily play at your best, contact Joan at info@pmi4.com or 828.696.2547 for a free 15-minute consultation. Learn what is missing in your game so you can achieve the success you desire.

Improve your golf game NOW by listening to PMI self-hypnosis CDs in the privacy of your own home. Order today at www.pmi4.com/cart

If this monthly mental instruction newsletter has been helpful to you, please share it with your friends so they can have more fun playing the game of golf while lowering their scores. Also, please share with me how this information has helped improve your game. If you have a question, or need help with your mental game, email Joan at info@pmi4.com






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Positive Mental Imagery
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