As a charter member of HeartMath, I learned years ago that the human heart actually possesses the equivalent of its own brain. HeartMath calls it the heart-brain which interacts and communicates with the head-brain. The two brains continually exchange critical information that influences how the body functions. Your heart is the 15th club in your bag and is surely the most important one. Playing from your heart is always going to be more meaningful than playing from technique.
Anyone who has ever played the game of golf knows that it is different from all other sports and games. The golf ball waits for the club to hit it. The golfer also waits for his/her turn. In this waiting period the mind of a golfer conjures up many negative scenarios unless the brain has been trained to focus in the moment on a predetermined strategy. That strategy is to love playing the game regardless of the circumstances and outcome.
The real creation of your golf game and swing are in doing it and feeling it. Your body is what gives you the good feeling in your heart of hitting a perfect shot. There is a big difference between thinking about the golf swing and feeling it. The happiest person is the person who is enjoying life. The meaning of life is feeling. When you let go of all outside distractions you can feel in your heart what is inside.
The mind can be convinced but the heart has to feel it. Play with the simplicity of the heart of a child; no doubts, no questions, just feeling. You still have the heart of a child, but it’s been buried under so many rules. It is time to let go of all the self-limiting rules and let the heart of a child perform. In the feeling of a full heart, time stands still (the zone state). Let your heart be your guide. Let go of the mind and return to your heart.
If you base your success on the outcome of the shot, you have made a judgment. You have ignored the feeling by thinking it was good or bad. If you are constantly thinking about what you didn’t do perfectly, your game will not improve. I was told early on in my golf career that when I took a lesson from the club pro, ask him what I was doing right, and to practice making that better.
What gifts do you have inside yourself? Are you an athlete? Or do you believe you are not athletic? What gifts can you bring to playing the game of golf? Thinking and feeling. What gifts are you over-using? Over-thinking and negative feelings. What gifts do you need to develop? Acceptance, trust, allowing, loving.
The Human Spirit of the Golfer
Golf reflects the journey into your inner self through exploring the mysteries of this royal and ancient game. At its highest levels of hitting perfect shots, and achieving your fullest potential, your spirit quietly soars “into the zone” where you are in a state of euphoria and trust. No longer is your spirit dampened by past experiences of fear, anxiety, indecision, distractions, and self-limitations. The joy you experience is in the moment, and not in the outcome.
When you take the self-imposed stress out of your golf game and regain confidence in your ability, you will be able to enjoy the game as a means of relaxation and a source of enriching your spirit and soul. To do this is to focus on what you love about the game and not on your limitations.
Choose to Balance your Mind-Body-Spirit
Use your thoughts to create your world, and the golf game that you desire. Enlighten yourself with positive visions. See the good in all the things you are experiencing, and you will feel the happiness deep within yourself. Feel it, see it, experience it, and react to the happiness you have created. Feel the shift in perception. You create in your world exactly what you focus your attention on.Here are six mental, emotional, and spiritual attributes to bring you into balance for a more rewarding golf game:
- Develop a good sense of humor. Think happy thoughts. There are an unlimited number of jokes about the game of golf and its unpredictability. Standing and waiting for your turn to hit has always been a traditional time to tell golf jokes. Perhaps it is a lost art that needs to be reinstated. Laughing is the best medicine for calming the mind and body. When you play and laugh it reminds you to be grateful you are alive.
- Develop a sense of humility. When you let go of the judgments you have about yourself, golf becomes a game to enjoy. Don’t take yourself too seriously. Don’t take other people too seriously. Don’t take life in general too seriously. Remember that your number one reason for playing golf is to have fun.
- Accept your circumstances. Acceptance is surrendering to your feelings, your problems, your relationships, your golf game. Before you can change, recognize that this is the way it is right now. Abstain from the struggle. Accepting the situation releases the pressure and brings relief. When you relax, you change your heartbeat, physiology, and energy pattern. Then you are better able to see what to do next.
- Think clearly and decisively. Do not make choices out of fear. What you fight against enhances what you fear. Use discernment. When you are feeling fear on the golf course, recognize it, feel it, and breathe deeply to relax your mind and body. Step away from the ball and practice swinging your club until you feel the rhythm and tempo you had intended. Then focus on your pre-shot routine.
- Be kind and patient with yourself. Acknowledge yourself often and criticize yourself and your game less. Use the Power of Love for yourself, not the Love of Power. You deserve your own self-love. Love creates change.
- Don’t compare yourself to others. Because of the competitive nature of sports, it is easy to compare yourself with others, which adds to your sense of personal inadequacy and struggle to do better. Life lessons come from your inside world. Focus on yourself and what you are doing. You will become what you focus on. Your focused intentions are the most powerful tools you possess.
Being “in the zone state” on the golf course is the feeling of being in love with what you are doing. It happens when you have given up your ego self by being in love with the game. You have let go of the worries, judgments, and thoughts you have about yourself. You have aligned with your mind-body-spirit by experiencing love for the game rather than fearing the outcome. This is how you create your own personal happiness.
Look for the experience of love in everything that you do. Believe in it and it will happen. It is your superpower.
May the reason for the season bring you love, hope, peace, joy,
and unlimited fun on the golf course.
Play “in the zone” with Joan
Entrain Your Heart & Mind for Peak Performances
Additional newsletters on all aspects of the mental golf game are available on the Positive Mental Imagery website at www.pmi4.com Archived Newsletters.
To train your brain for improving and trusting your short game, listen to the Positive Mental Imagery self-empowering guided imagery self-hypnosis CDs/MP3s in the privacy of your own home. Eight different empowerment audios are available at www.pmi4.com/cart
If these golf tips are of value to you and you would like to improve your mental golf game, call Joan for a complimentary 15-minute consultation. She can be reached by phone at 828.707.5478, by email at email@example.com or through the Positive Mental Imagery website or blog.
“THE HEART OF GOLF, Access Your Supreme Intelligence for Peak Performances” explores and explains negative emotions such as fear and performance anxiety, the four Cs of mind blockage, the four progressive stages of learning the supreme intelligence of the heart, and the way to access the zone in competition. It is a player’s guide for developing your true inner self by returning to joy and love of self instead of seeking praise and rewards from the outside world.
“THE HEART OF GOLF” guidebook for transforming your life and your golf game is available on Amazon and Kindle https://amzn.to/2MQzjfq