Why your mental state needs to be as supple as your muscle…

When I started out I was so naive to the mental side of golf, I certainly didn’t realise how important it was to be in your happy place.  I soon got used to arriving at the club, heading off down the fairway and forgetting about everything that was going on in my life good & bad.  

I loved my four hours of pure bliss just me and my mind following a little white ball around, until I started getting really serious thinking I was better than I was and expectation crept in.  

Scary thoughts appeared and all of a sudden I was beating myself up on the inside, all these new emotions creeping into my happy place … I have some great tips here that can help you trigger your happy place before you play and more importantly while you are playing !!


  1. Dampen The Noise In Your Head: You might have thoughts of self-doubt, worry, fearful images and other internal distractions, but you can cover them up. As you begin your pre-shot routine, listen to your breathing or hum a tune to block out these unwanted thoughts and images. When you have a strong mental game of golf, you know how to manage your mind, and your focus.
  1. Stop Evaluating Your Progress: Instead of riding the emotional roller-coaster of being excited when you hit a good shot, and depressed when you don’t, try staying more emotionally even as you play. To do this, don’t be consumed with how well you are doing or “If you will win”. Instead, suspend judgment and take a “Let’s see what happens” approach and simply keep your mind in the here and now. When you have a strong mental game of golf, you have more poise and patience with yourself.
  1. Commit To The Shot: If you change your mind about anything on the shot, back off the ball, recommit and refocus on your routine. Picture the result you want in your mind and before you swing, let go of that image, and refocus on the ball. When you have a strong mental game of golf, you will have more mental discipline.

Bill Cole, MS, MA-Sports Psychology Coaching

The following are good mental golf attitudes to adopt:

  • Golf is a fun game to play. Believe in your ability to have fun.
  • Play each shot as if it is the only shot you will hit today.
  • Believe that you can get the ball up and down from anywhere.
  • Use the natural elements (wind, rain, cold, heat) as your friend.
  • Be responsible for your pace of play. Let others be responsible for theirs.
  • Play target golf; ball-hole.
  • Think thoughts that will produce rewarding shots.
  • Enjoy your good shots. Let go of judging the outcome of your shots.
  • Affirm your confidence in yourself and in your ability.
  • Change your limiting beliefs and you change your game.
  • Treat yourself as you would your best friend.


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