By learning to manage your emotions you will give yourself the best chance for extended periods of optimum play. That should come as no surprise to you, and here are some tried and true methods that we have learned from Tour Players that you can use to maximize the management of your emotions. While positive emotions like excitement and dynamic energy make possible trusting swings, difficult stretches of play are preceded by the onset of negative emotions that are permitted to linger. Because negative emotions come unannounced – anger does not signal it’s eminent arrival – they can flood our senses without warning and block strategy decisions as surely as they can trusting swings. An effective plan is to allow negative emotions, (anger, fear, frustration, anxiety) that interfere with your game, to come into awareness, then let the emotions pass. By recognizing a negative emotion when it arrives – I’m frustrated - you can decrease its intensity, change its direction, and limit its duration. That might be a little scary, but while you really can’t control the onset of a negative emotion you surely have a choice as to how long you allow it to last. Conversely, when positive emotions such as dynamic energy and excitement become an integral part of your pre-shot routine, you have magnified your opportunities for a successful play. By allowing negative emotions to pass and positive emotions to surface and stay, you have done the important steps toward focusing your mind in present time awareness in preparation for each shot.
A special thank you to Dr. Glen Albaugh for his keen insight on this very important, and all to often forgotten, part of the game.