How to Beat Your Golf Game Blues
As a golfer, you know what we mean. Everyone looks forward to a day out on the course, but sometimes that day doesn't quite pan out like you expect. Even if you aren't a highly competitive golfer, you still want to play well and enjoy at least a few good shots over the course of 18 holes. After all, it's those good shots that keep you coming back time and time again. But what do you do when your golf game hits the skids and you start to feel that playing a round is more of a chore than an indulgence? Let's take a few moments to talk about beating the golf game blues and restoring your love for this wonderful sport.
Finding Yourself in a Rut
Even golfers who absolutely love to play can fall into a rut from time to time and often that rut is caused by poor play. When you start to stack up one bad round after another, your enjoyment of the game can begin to wane pretty quickly. However, it isn't only poor play that can cause you to become frustrated on the course. If, for instance, you play the same course over and over again with the same people, you might find that the game is getting a bit stale. When that happens, you are more likely to get frustrated on the course simply because you aren't having all that much fun.
Remember, golf requires a significant investment of both time and money, so you need to make sure that investment is being returned in the way of great enjoyment. The first thing to do in order to get yourself out of a rut is acknowledge that you are a little frustrated with the game currently. Many golfers just pretend that they are still having as much fun as always, even when they aren't finding it to be all that enjoyable. By being willing to admit that you are in a golf rut, you can get down to work on finding ways to make the game fun again.
Taking a Step Back
This is a tip that can apply to many of the different things in life which may get frustrating after a while - simply take some time off. Step back from golf for a short period of time, and look for other ways to have fun during the time that you would normally be spending on the golf course. It doesn't particularly matter what you decide to do during this time, as long as you are getting well away from the game of golf. This period of stepping back from the game could be just a week, or it could be a month or more. With a little bit of time away, you are likely to gain perspective and realize just how much you still enjoy the opportunity to play golf. When you do decide to come back, your 'fire' should be reignited and the frustration that you had felt may be a thing of the past.
Dedicated Range Time
Even if you don't want to take time completely away from the game, you can at least keep yourself off of the course for a while as more bad rounds will often only lead to even deeper frustration. Set aside a period of a week or two where you are going to only visit the driving range while steering clear of the golf course itself. This approach could have a similar effect as the previous idea, as you won't have the frustration of making bogeys to prevent you from enjoying your time.
Work on the basics of your technique, enjoy the good shots you hit on the range, and don't worry about having to add up a score at the end of the day. Once you have enjoyed several stress-free practice sessions, go ahead and make a tee time and return to the course with your mind in a good place.
Try Playing a New Course
In the spirit of breaking up your golf routine, consider playing some new courses in your area instead of the tracks that you usually visit. Going to play some new courses will give you a fresh perspective on the game, and you likely won't worry so much about your score because you will be distracted by the new scenery and challenge in front of you.
After playing a new course or two, you might notice that you have a renewed excitement to get back to your own course for a round with your friends. In addition to the fun that comes with playing a new course, you can also improve your game in this way, as playing different courses will require you to come up with a variety of shots that you may not usually hit.
Enter a Tournament
Okay, so this might seem like the last thing that you would want to do when you are frustrated with your game. However, playing in a competition could be exactly what you need to place your focus on something other than yourself. When in competition, you will be distracted by everything going on around you, and your mind will work hard to help you come up with your best possible performance. Every golfer has a competitive streak buried somewhere deep inside, and playing in competition can help to bring that streak to the surface. Even if you don't wind up placing very high on the leaderboard, the experience of competition should motivate you to work hard and get your game back on track.
Golf is a great game, and there are millions of people around the world who can hardly wait until their next chance to tee it up on the course. However, it probably comes as no surprise to you that a large portion of the golfing population gets frustrated with the game from time to time, either due to boredom or poor performance. No matter what it is that has you in a golf 'funk,' you can work your way out of that mindset using the tips above. With any luck, your frame of mind will turn around and you will soon be loving the game once again.