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How do you motivate yourself to keep improving?


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Love it great topic. As other have alluded to I am just competitive by blood. Runs in the family I think. My drive to get better is to beat the next person that’s better than me. Of course started with my dad. Sorry dad @Placasse61but after that first win I cannot think of another time since then that he has 😂. So on down the line. My uncle Tim was always that person to beat in the family. Close to scratch golfer and as of late has been struggling a little but I beat him for the first time 2 weeks ago. Next up will be my cousin Dave who is really good, we’ll see if I can do it.

i do like this adaption of buying yourself something at increments, that’s a good drive. Like others on here I’m a CH now and I see shiny stuff 😂

love the topic

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20 hours ago, Tanky said:

I'd love to hear from other hackers what you do to stay motivated when the going gets tough?

Since i'm a proud golf bum aka thrift store7udget golfer, every-time I break into a new HCP segment I buy something new/fitted.

When I broke 20, I bought, new Adidas shoes, when I broke 15 I got a fitted Cobra driver. Breaking 10 will mean some new cutlery (irons) for me...

I keep my score cards to motivate myself and see where I need improving. 

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As many others have said being a bit competitive has helped me. Like many first I wanted to beat my dad, then move up the ranks in my high school team, and now more try to beat my best. It took some time personally to transition to this mentality after competing throughout college. I think joining a league or something of the like would be great. 

Also for those that have mentioned mental improvement I really like the books by Dr. Bob Rotella. He has few and they are all short but have some great tips that I like to read from time to time to keep my mind in the right place.

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Nowadays the main thing I think about is enjoyment and fun. Yes I like to improve so every now and then I get a lesson or I video my swing and compare it to a video of my swing from 10 years ago. It is amazing what changes as you get older and in my case I had a painful illness for 5 years which meant I developed so interesting habits.

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On 10/16/2020 at 12:25 PM, Tanky said:

I'd love to hear from other hackers what you do to stay motivated when the going gets tough?

Since i'm a proud golf bum aka thrift store7udget golfer, every-time I break into a new HCP segment I buy something new/fitted.

When I broke 20, I bought, new Adidas shoes, when I broke 15 I got a fitted Cobra driver. Breaking 10 will mean some new cutlery (irons) for me...

I am lucky as I never really think about the previous hole. Can't do anything about it now. My biggest issue is loosing concentration. Two factors seem to affect me, usually when I am playing well, it happens on the 13-14 hole, you know you have 26-28 points after 12 and when you leave 14 you are still 28-30 points. It usually takes a few holes before I finally start thinking again.

The second is slow play, if I have to wait more than a few minutes to play a shot off the fairway I usually stuff it up.

 

Edited by Firebird
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Callaway Big Bertha Putter - for when it is wet

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On 10/17/2020 at 5:17 AM, jddaigneault said:

I’m by nature entirely too competitive, so until I break par consistently I will not be satisfied. That being said, I make note of positives from every round. It’s easy to beat myself up over the bad shots but it’s the good ones that keep you going back. What did I do well in hitting that approach shot? How do I replicate the physical and mental approach of that moment to get more consistent? To me, that’s just fun. 

I was just talking to a former golfer who is playing D1 golf about this yesterday. He said it perfectly. “No one makes it to the next level unless they fall in love with the process.” Find your joy in improving, grab it by the reins, and run with it. If you’re not having fun you’re doing it wrong. 

I assume you read the Zen Golf book! hahahah

Was a great eye opener for me.

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🤙

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On 10/16/2020 at 4:39 PM, bens197 said:

One of the best mental tips I ever received applies to golf but also to life. 
 

“Be careful what you think, your thoughts steer your life.”

As a hovering 3-8 handicap, I acknowledge that there will be doubles, missed greens and 3 putts. Keeping perspective and managing my expectations of my own game, I can let a missed opportunity or a poor shot go. If I remind myself to say hey, clean slate on this shot, the opportunity to make a good swing is better in a positive mindset. 

I listened to a great podcast recently, one from Golf Science Lab and they had a mental coach on.  He made a great point about not trying to force positive thinking.  Too frequently, we hear that you must have a positive attitude over the ball; that we can't hit a shot if we have a negative thought.  And then we wind up worrying about the way we think, in addition to everything else we worry about on the golf course.  He suggested that we just accept negative thoughts like everything else, and just let them wash over us.  Let it come, let it go.  

My daughter did a great job of this yesterday.  She'd been stuck at the 150 yard mark of Operation 36 for a couple months now, and she puts a ton of pressure on herself.  She dealt with the pressure yesterday and canned a nice 5 footer for 36 to move up to the 200 yard level.

 

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6 hours ago, Tanky said:

I assume you read the Zen Golf book! hahahah

Was a great eye opener for me.

Hello Amazon...

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48 minutes ago, jddaigneault said:

Hello Amazon...

I got the audiobook and listen to it on social rounds or when practicing. 

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🤙

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6 hours ago, HardcoreLooper said:

I listened to a great podcast recently, one from Golf Science Lab and they had a mental coach on.  He made a great point about not trying to force positive thinking.  Too frequently, we hear that you must have a positive attitude over the ball; that we can't hit a shot if we have a negative thought.  And then we wind up worrying about the way we think, in addition to everything else we worry about on the golf course.  He suggested that we just accept negative thoughts like everything else, and just let them wash over us.  Let it come, let it go.  

My daughter did a great job of this yesterday.  She'd been stuck at the 150 yard mark of Operation 36 for a couple months now, and she puts a ton of pressure on herself.  She dealt with the pressure yesterday and canned a nice 5 footer for 36 to move up to the 200 yard level.

 

Congrats to your Daughter!!

There is a lot of discussion on how toxic positivity can be equally detrimental as toxic negativity.  I completely agree with that premise of forcing positive thoughts...especially when it contradicts your personality traits.

If you’re into the mental game, check out Daniel Kahneman.  He is a Nobel Prize winner and a brilliant behavioral psychologist.   His book “Thinking Fast & Slow” is really fascinating and has a lot of thought provoking content that’s easily translatable into golf. 

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I listened to a great podcast recently, one from Golf Science Lab and they had a mental coach on.  He made a great point about not trying to force positive thinking.  Too frequently, we hear that you must have a positive attitude over the ball; that we can't hit a shot if we have a negative thought.  And then we wind up worrying about the way we think, in addition to everything else we worry about on the golf course.  He suggested that we just accept negative thoughts like everything else, and just let them wash over us.  Let it come, let it go.  
My daughter did a great job of this yesterday.  She'd been stuck at the 150 yard mark of Operation 36 for a couple months now, and she puts a ton of pressure on herself.  She dealt with the pressure yesterday and canned a nice 5 footer for 36 to move up to the 200 yard level.
 

Congrats to you daughter!
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I watched a couple videos on breathing exercises to help with performance anxiety and lower heart rate, and have tried to use some of those on the course. You'd be amazed what having a clear head and good breathing will do to your golf game. I also believe they did a segment on breath control on a TXG video that I enjoyed as well. With so many mechanics and positions to worry about, sometimes the most effective way to play well is to calm down and have fun :)


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Great thread here; lots of stuff I identify with.

Me, like a lot of others, just an uber competitive guy with a complete inability to do something in moderation.  If I'm in, I'm all in.  Finding the motivation to work harder to keep improving has never been the challenge for me.  Having patience with myself is extraordinarily challenging, largely because I know what I'm capable of (I've seen me do it!) so I get pretty frustrated when I don't pull a shot off, or when I'm just overall inconsistent round-to-round.

Ours is a game that can't be beat, at the end of the day our opponent is ourselves.  How can you not be fired up to keep striving?!

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Motivation is different for everyone and ties into a lot of internal and external factors: 
Competition with friends and family, the time available in your life to play and practice and how that ties to other priorities like kids/family/work/hobbies. If the personal characteristics aren't inherent to drive you to improve, there is limited benefit to forcing it and grinding if you don't enjoy it. Just play casual rounds as time permits and enjoy the opportunity to get out in a relaxing setting for some recreation. 

Personally, stat tracking helps... If you can't be bothered working on putting anymore, it is helpful to see that 60-100 yard approaches, 20-30 yard chips as well as various full swing technique issues need work and pick something that you are more interested in at the time but you still know is helping your game and not mindlessly hitting balls. 

I like the idea of tying an equipment purchase to a scoring or handicap threshold... 

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The best way I've found to keep myself motivated and interested is to never stop looking for new things to learn. Whether its watching every single TXG video (sometimes multiple times) or finding new stories to read/listen to. If its connected to my game that's great but sometimes I find when you focus on your own game you can get into a rut at times. I have the luxury of working at a course and never have to go far to have a good conversation about the game. Then I feel motivated to go out and have a good story of my own. Makes me want to spend more time on the course and practicing.

Long story short, sometimes enjoying the big picture aspect of the game makes you enjoy and work harder on your personal game.

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I try to practice just to keep what I've got.

If my score drops, it feels like I'm a burden to my playing partners.

Sometimes,  a  change will happen, and my score will drop.

It is just a constant practice, and when a new area improves, it's a real bonus.

Always chasing different clubs

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53 minutes ago, Jackal said:

I try to practice just to keep what I've got.

If my score drops, it feels like I'm a burden to my playing partners.

Sometimes,  a  change will happen, and my score will drop.

It is just a constant practice, and when a new area improves, it's a real bonus.

to elaborate on the playing partners, if they are better than you it can be very motivating too. Yes, you don't wanna kill the pace of play, but you also want to give them a run for their money.

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to elaborate on the playing partners, if they are better than you it can be very motivating too. Yes, you don't wanna kill the pace of play, but you also want to give them a run for their money.

Playing with people better than me always helps me improve: it was the same with skiing/snowboarding: I have no evidence to prove it, but someone who’s game is in a groove helps me find mine...


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As a perfectionist it comes naturally. Sure the love of the game helps immensely, but on the days I want to throw my clubs away I somehow hit that one shot that give me a high and then I start thinking surely if I did it once I could do it again. That motivates me more than my goals of winning tournaments. 

It's 90% Mental

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