Golf is Mentally Difficult So Think Clearly

As difficult as golf is from a physical standpoint, it might be even more difficult mentally. You need to make good decisions from the first hole on through to the last, and you have to keep your temper and frustrations under control all along the way. You might be surprised to find just how many physical mistakes you can make up for when you have a solid mental game to support you.

Let’s take a look at some of the mental game keys that can help you take the next step in your progression as a golfer.

  • Patience is paramount. We’ll be honest here – it’s hard to be patient as a golfer. This is a frustrating game sometimes, and frustration can cause you to lose your patience in just about any situation. In addition, golf is a slow game, so you have plenty of time to think about your frustrations. When you combine those two elements, it is easy to see why so many golfers lose their patience at some point during an 18-hole round. However, if you hope to play at a higher level, you need to learn how to stay in the right frame of mind for the whole day. Staying patient will help you to make smart decisions, such as using a three wood instead of a driver on a narrow hole. If you do feel that you are losing your patience during a given round, take a moment to collect yourself and get back on track as soon as possible.
  • Avoid penalty strokes. Yes, there is a physical component to being able to avoid penalty strokes, but this is largely a mental task. You need to make smart decisions in order to keep your ball away from places like water hazards, out of bounds areas, etc. If you are consistently taking on too much risk, you are sure to get burned at some point. Play safely away from the dangerous spots on the course and you can keep penalty strokes away from your scorecard most of the time.
  • Treat each hole as its own challenge. This is a hard lesson for many golfers to learn. Rather than letting one hole carry over into the next, you should do your best to approach them all individually. As you walk or ride from one green to the next tee, try to set aside any frustration (or even excitement) that may be lingering from the previous hole. There will be time after your round to think about all the good shots and bad shots that took place along the way. For now, you are just going to focus on the task at hand, which is to play the next hole to the best of your ability.

Golf is a great game in large part because you can consistently work to become a better version of yourself on the course. Even if you are proud of certain parts of your game at the moment, you can always work to get better in other areas. We hope the ideas presented in this article will help you continue to take steps forward in the months and years to come. Good luck and have fun!