Every golfer knows that you have to practice to gain improvement. The idea is simple enough, perform enough repetitions and you increase your potential to learn something to a level where you can perform it in an excellent way, and you don’t have to think about it too much.
Mastery Focus Formula
As you probably know, most golfers never learn skills to this level, instead they stumble around at the lower learning levels where they think too much about what they are doing, and get a lot less than they expected.
Thinking gets in the way of doing, and you need to not only recognize this, you need to do something about it.
Tim Gallwey the author of The Inner Game of Tennis expressed it with his simple formula;
Performance = Potential – Interference.
Basically the formula says that in order to perform to your potential you need to reduce distraction.
The more distraction you have—the less you learn—the less you learn—the less you can do.
So the worst thing you can do is allow distraction (or interference) to occur in your practice environment.
Easier said than done right?
If you want to take your golf skill development to Mastery level where you can perform them under any type of pressure, you need to learn how to isolate each shot you hit from the pile, and give it the full attention it needs.
You see it’s not enough to just hit lots of practice balls to improve your golf skills, this will never be enough to reach Mastery level.
If this were the case, every golfer who practices a lot would achieve Mastery over every skill they practice. Hitting lots of practice shots is relatively easy to do, but hitting each shot with your full attention and intention is difficult to do, and is rarely practiced in our experience.
The Golf Ball has Potential
Every time you go to the practice ground it will be helpful to understand that each golf ball you hit is filled with unique potential energy available to you.
What this means is that each ball in the bucket of balls has the potential to do what you want.
So your job is to hit each golf ball with a clearly defined purpose, that is, you will have a specific technical focus or a specific targeting focus.
You see each golf ball you hit--like each swing you make from driver to putter is different, every time and in every way.
The golf ball therefore becomes an extension of your intention, and your attention should be fully focused on achieving this intention or clearly defined purpose every single time.
“Don't think of what you have to do, don't consider how to carry it out!" he exclaimed. "The shot will only go smoothly when it takes the archer himself by surprise.”
― Eugen Herrigel, Zen in the Art of Archery
Typically when golfers hit practice balls they hit the balls with a bucket mentality, rather than with a singular focus.
They hit many golf balls trying to achieve their practice goal, rather than hitting one golf ball with one purpose many times over to achieve their practice goal.
Can you see the difference?
A Master archer with a full quiver of arrows always has the mind-set of just one arrow to one target.
There is only ever one golf ball--one golf shot--one target.
We believe this ‘bucket mentality’ is largely responsible for many advanced and elite golfers who find it difficult to stay in the moment when hitting shots on the golf course.
Because they have focused countless times on the many, they can’t focus easily on the one.
You should never have the attitude of hitting a bucket of balls (or a bag full of balls), rather, you should have the attitude of hitting one golf ball as precisely as you can, many times over, with full recognition that each golf ball you hit is unique and requires your full intention and attention.
This is the Mastery Attitude, or what Tiger Woods described recently in a Time article interview as "Full Throttle.".
When you isolate each golf ball from the bucket and dedicate yourself to ensuring that you execute each stroke in the skill set as precisely as you can--many times over, you will move swiftly towards Mastery.
Remember this because it's important; the golf ball possesses no memory. It responds blindly to your commands. It knows no future or past, it simply responds...
So if you could make between 5,000 and 10,000 swings starting today with full commitment to executing each golf ball you hit with the attitude that this shot is the only one you will ever hit coupled with accurate communication and support from your golf instructor, just imagine how much better you would be with every skill set you practiced?
You would eventually train yourself and your skills to such a high level of competence that getting distracted on the golf course in big tournaments would be virtually impossible.
Study our simple and easy to understand Mastery model, The 5 Steps to Golf Skill Mastery;
- Target It
- Train It
- Test It
- Transfer It
- Trust It
Use this simple model as your guide to help you to understand the skill development maturation process you go through every time you decide to improve a golf skill.
I guarantee you that with this powerful approach to game improvement in the months ahead you will begin to experience a level of confidence and achievement far greater than anything you could have imagined or experienced previously.
So do it today and do it every time.
One ball--one time, with the Mastery Attitude, and with The 5 Steps to Mastery process.
Lawrie Montague and David Milne - Pro Tour Golf College
The Pro Tour Golf Training College for Serious Amateur and Professional Golfers
Contact us today at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.