Golf is a game that can so often have us slipping into a Rigid Mindset when it comes to our performance. Thoughts such as "I need to get my swing right before I can compete", "I had such a bad warmup, I am in for a shit day today" or "I need to have the same Pre Shot Routine for EVERY shot!".
This rigid type of thinking so often trigger's stress and anxiety during our performance that makes it difficult for us to deal with anything that might happen out of left field. Golf as we know it, most of the game is played from Left Field!
Negative thoughts, bad breaks, poor shots, poor warmup sessions, feeling frustration or even getting really angry are NORMAL parts of playing the game of golf! These thoughts or feelings don't need to mean anything more than what they are, just ONE thought, ONE shot or ONE feeling.
A lot of golfer's have been told to try and block out all of these thoughts or feelings, as these thoughts and feeling will equate to a poor performance, but that is not reality! It is our association or relationship to these thoughts and feelings that impact our performance, not the specific thought or feeling itself.
The Rigidity that golfers have when it comes to their Pre Shot Routine is an interesting discussion point. It's been prescribed for years to have the exact same Pre Shot Routine to prepare for every shot, but how many shots do we have in a round of golf that are exactly the same?
So if thats the case, how does it make sense to prepare exactly the same way for every shot?
The Pre Shot Routine is there for one reason, to help us best prepare to perform for the shot we have in front of us RIGHT NOW! My philosophy is that the Pre Shot process has to be fluid and flexible to help manage the various shots we come across in a round of golf, as well as our own mental and emotional relationship to these shots.
Sometimes we get to a shot and feel great, other times we get to a shot and feel uncomfortable. The way we prepare for these shots should be very different, to respect both shots and the mental/emotional connections we have with both situations.
The next time you get a chance to go and play, I want you to be aware whether you are a victim of Rigid thinking and begin to shed the skin of RIGIDITY Today!