Panic merchant

The sign at the entrance to Byron Bay reads, relax, slow down and chill out. It’s a great mantra for a popular holiday spot (Maybe they should also add, turn off mobile phones).

A mantra for a busy golfer could be, relax, slow thoughts and play the game.

I used to be a panic merchant. Anytime I was playing “serious” golf my mind would spin. I’d be concerned about the score, my swing and what other people were thinking. I’ve long since realised that this kind of panic is a waste of time and energy. For staters, nobody gives a shit about you – they’re too busy with their own issues. So don’t worry what other people think – they don’t care.

The temptation for the busy golfer is to keep adding things to the system. Another swing thought. A new club. Some new training drill or fancy new tip. But this only compounds the problem.

When the heart and mind starts to race it’s time to relax, breath and play the game. You want to take all the unnecessary things away (no matter how important you think they are). This gives you focus and and an emptiness of approach. This leads to confidence and improved performance.

Your mission should be to see how much you can take away. You may even find that panic is a choice, not something that just happens to you.

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