Playing to MY Par

As the snow rolls into Chicago and my season officially wraps up, I have been looking back on how I approached this past season and the goals I set for myself.  One of my co-workers is getting her Master’s degree in sports psychology and has agreed to take me on as a bit of a project.  I have sat down with her a few times already and discussed how I approach practice, playing, setting my goals and how I deal with stress and my bad shots on the course.  It has been interesting to say the least and I am very excited to continue working with her on my mental game throughout the winter and into next season.

The very first thing we discussed was how I measure my game on the course.  She gave me a book that her advisor wrote called “Smart Golf” by Dede Owens and Dan Kirschenbaum and one of the very first concepts they discuss is playing to your own personal par.  I have been very caught up in the idea of breaking 80 and getting myself to a single digit handicap.  Every time I go out and play and I don’t break 80 I consider it a failure.  Since I have yet to break 80 you can imagine how many times I have walked off the course feeling like I didn’t accomplish anything even if I played decent.

When I go back to San Diego this week I am going to try this new technique.  I am going to approach each round with the mindset of simply trying to break my own personal par.  For me that means I get a stroke on the 14 toughest holes on the course.  If I go out each round and try to shoot below my handicap, eventually I will start to drop my handicap and break 80.  I really need a new metric of success on the course because the fact that I still have not broken 80 is getting very frustrating.  I am hoping this new approach will let me enjoy the game a bit more and allow me to start seeing small victories as progress on the road to my larger goals.

 

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One Comment to “Playing to MY Par”

  1. Excellent move to jettison the break 80 target. Get immersed in the process and enjoy; it WILL happen, no worries!

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