How to (NOT) self immolate on the golf course?

Might give this a go


Seems like it could work, also seems like it would infuriate me further when I realize that I not only hit the ball like a bitch, but I also throw the ball like a bitch :rofl:

I like the freeway analogy. However, I seen to have a similar yet different problem. I don’t even think about my total score… Like hardly ever, almost never… What gets me fuming is the sheer inability (whether actual or perceived) to just do the thing I’m trying like hell to do in that moment (executing the shot). If I didn’t care about the result, then it wouldn’t be an issue, but if I didn’t care about results, then I feel like it’s pointless to even set foot on the course, or practice or even try at all. That’s a shitty perspective, but that’s what I struggle with!

1 Like

I keep typing up really long responses and deleting them because I’m having difficulty summarizing Rotella’s ideas in a way that might make sense…so I’ll just say this.

Focusing on any results (score, where the ball actually goes, what people are going to think about us if we stick this next shot to two feet, etc…), we are getting out of process-oriented action. If you stay in process and be conscientious about what you can control (your preparation, your preshot routine, etc…) and accept with equanimity everything you can’t control (where the ball goes), results will tend to take care of themselves.

There’s a difference between not caring about results and not focusing on results. It’s a billion times easier said than done, but trust me…if you haven’t already, read Golf is not a Game of Perfect.


I have a copy of that book, I’ve read about 90% of it and it is truly confidence-inspiring. Rotella makes great points and when I read it, I feel like “yeah, I got this, no problem”. And then I get to the course feeling confident and then a few bad shots later, I turn into a head case, or get absolutely apathetic.

I have always struggled with getting very frustrated when things I’m passionate about to awry. Makes me feel like a mental midget.

I worked with Dr. Richard Coop (RIP) in the mid-2000’s and he told me some stories about having picked Michael Jordan’s brain at UNC. He asked MJ about how he handled streakiness.

Paraphrased from what I remember Dr. Coop telling me about the story…

Coop: “What do you tell yourself when you’ve missed 10 shots in a row?”

MJ: “I’m 50% from the field so the next 10 shots have to go in.”

Coop: “Doesn’t that type of thinking work against you when you’ve made 10 shots in a row? Shouldn’t you miss the next 10 then?”

MJ: “No. If I’ve made 10 in a row then I’m hot and I’m going to keep on knocking down shots.”

Basically, always point EVERYTHING towards positivity. Use stats to help convince yourself out of a slump, ignore them when you’re hot.


SoSo true. And well said!

1 Like

Faxon in a Rotella book said the same thing about putting.

Every truly great athlete I’ve ever known has a delusional level of confidence.


Best score ever is 76. I was one over through 16 today and proceeded to triple 17 (easiest hole on the course) to tie my record. A true Icarito situation.


Control over Mental explosion is a skill, not very different than getting out of bunkers or keeping your driver in play.
Your overall ability in this area is the summation of your natural ability and how hard you work on improvement.

  1. identify it as a problem
  2. research it (lots of great books on the subject
  3. consider a lesson or two
  4. practice

Don’t expect an overnight cure. Even if you improve, you will have setbacks. If you take a logical approach and work at it ,I’m sure you could improve.


Legitimately, books. Be a player that someone mentioned and obviously I own every Rotella book. The best thing about these books is that you realize that the best players in the world go through the same things we do from time to time. Probably, not to the extreme as an amateur, but the stories and tools have helped me be more consistent, stop being frustrated, and just enjoy the next shot because that is the only one that matters. Easier said than done, but you get the point.

1 Like

Best thing I’ve heard and used is to always keep your last scorecard from a course and use it to play a match against yourself. Takes the focus off total score and makes it all about trying to just do 1 better on each hole.