Karl Morris is one of the finest thinkers in the game of golf.  He is only living Jedi Knight and has worked extensively with Yoda on his mental approach to light sabre battles.  Be sure toCheck out Karl’s website www.golf-brain.com

MENTALITY (state of mind, frame of mind, attitude, approach, way of thinking, outlook, mindset); Do you HAVE IT?

clip_image002For the last 12 months I have been involved in what turned out to be an extraordinary project. I was contacted by a man called Joe Sillett who had become a real life example of how this downturn has affected all of us. Having a business once valued in the millions, to then find that he was made redundant as the recession really bit hard.

It was refreshing to meet someone who was so up front about what had happened. He didn’t pretend, he didn’t blame, he was honest enough to admit WHY his business had struggled. He did though have an idea! The phone conversation went something like this: ‘Do you think that people would be INTERESTED in a book with some of sports all time great players EXPLAINING how they made it, how they overcame difficulties, how they set their mind to succeed?’ ‘Would you be able to provide an analysis of how EVERYONE can benefit from what the true greats did to become winners?’ ‘Does the Pope pray?’


What if the book was full of nearly made it’s rather than TRUE greats?

Then he showed me the list of people who had agreed to be involved. When two of our finest golfers ever Lee Westwood and Laura Davies headed the list I was completely sold. Little did I know that what these two greats revealed in their interviews would give priceless tools for ANY golfer to be able to improve their own game of golf.

Laura Davies talked about how she worked out that when she plays badly her eyes tend to dart all ovepope_funnyr the place as she is addressing the ball and her mind is ‘too busy’. Full of negative thoughts about ‘what if’. To combat that she worked out such a simple but effective tool of disciplining herself to focus on the back of the ball as opposed to letting her eyes dart around. This I have found to be a major problem when golfers are nervous. Eyes that are busy produce minds that are busy. Do you do that? Had you even considered it might be a factor? What Laura is doing is quietening her mind by having the INTENTION to focus on the back of the ball. Of all the things she COULD be focused on she has the discipline to put her mind in a place that helps rather than hinders her game.

Lee Westwood when asked about his most destructive emotion said “It’s not so much an emotion, but one of the most destructive things is to get ahead of yourself. I did that on the final hole at Turnbery. The ‘secret’ is to stay in the present and focus on what is in front of you”

Nothing new in that, yet one of golf’s greatest players saying ‘the secret’ is to focus on what is in front of you!

Not many people reading this will have lost an Open championship with this mind game error but we have all fallen victim to getting in front of ourselves on the golf course. Be that to break a hundred for the first time or win a club medal it doesn’t matter what the situation is. We feel pressure when we go into the future and imagine WHAT will happen. The skill of being in the here and now is one of the most valuable skills that you can EVER develop. If Lee Westwood says it is ‘the secret’ then I think that it would be worth ALL of us working towards improving this most important mental skill. Focusing exclusively on the task at hand without allowing yourself to drift into a possible future actually allows you to become the best golfer that YOU can be.

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