Wednesday, June 1, 2016

You Are Enough

It's Game Day and your preparation is complete.  Whether or not you've done all you can is moot.  How your body feels doesn't really matter.  Your ball flight is happening.  Your mental game is chosen.  What happened yesterday is in the past.  In other words, it's GO TIME.  What is the very best attitude you can have on Game Day?

Yes, it's true.  What you bring to the competition is enough. If you can embrace that simple spirit within your heart, you will play golf with heart.  That isn't to say that every day you will have your best game or even a good game, but what it means is, you'll have enough presence to play the best you can.

If there is one thing I've learned as a coach, it is to communicate this one thing to players.  Each day when you tee it up, what you have is enough.  However, few players hear it, feel it or grasp it.  Instead, from the moment the player hits the course, the concerns are often focused on questions, such as "Do I have it today?" "What will happen?" These questions begin the journey away from "What I have is enough."  The journey continues with thoughts of what isn't happening.  Further down the road of doubt comes comparisons to others.  The path ends with the player's self talk actually arguing against her capabilities instead of embracing them.

We are drawn to players who embrace this simple statement of I am enough.  They seem to do so much with what they have on the course.  They don't always have the best game, but at the end of the day, they have the best score.  Their quotes are often about character instead of golf shots.  They keep it simple, they accept their own efforts, they love the challenges, they compete and then at the end of the day, they walk away knowing they did all they could.  The reason we're drawn to them is, they are rare.  Here are some quotes from some golfers who knew that what they had was enough when they teed it up.

Champions across time have all known that their success depended upon their preparation and their mindset.  They've all found a way to love the game under the most pressure.  Most of all, they know that the thoughts they feed their mind will create their round as much as any shots they hit.  When they get to the first tee, they know deep down that what they brought is enough and who they are is enough.  They have faith in themselves and during that four hours, they don't question themselves; they play the game.

So, how can you do this?  Decide today how you want to think when you get to the range to warm up.  If a question pops in your head that you can't answer or don't want to consider, simply have a mantra ready to say to yourself.  It can be as simple as, I am enough or I love to compete.  It can combat the questions with set answers, such as "let it go and move on now" or "I the can think about that later, but now I'm going to enjoy the day and play the game."  Whatever it is about golf that you love, keep it in mind when the questions pop up.  Know that the best in the world hit bad shots, so you certainly will, too.  Understand that you will face challenges and your focus and courage in the moment is more important than the outcome.  Be yourself! It's enough today!

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