Dec
07

Talk yourself into better golf with golf hypnosis for positive self talk

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Do you talk to yourself when you’re playing golf? Well, if you don’t, you may have a serious problem. It’s called brain death! Self-talk, otherwise known as internal dialogue or intrapersonal communication, is one of the main functions of our conscious mind. It allows us to make sense of our conflicting thoughts and to express our ideas and feelings to ourselves. Most of the time we talk to ourselves internally and sometimes, particularly after a bad shot, we share our self-talk with everyone in earshot. That can be a large distance with some of the golfer’s I’ve played with!

Self talk really comes into its own when we are internally analysing and evaluating complex choices in our lives. A good example is when you are starting your pre-shot routine and deciding on the type of shot you’re going to play. Have you ever had one voice in your head proposing an ambitious shot with a driver and another one encouraging you to make a more conservative shot with an iron? Don’t worry about it. It’s perfectly normal and unlikely to be a symptom of schizophrenia!

Now, I’ve often written about the concept that whatever we consciously think about our unconscious mind does it’s best to deliver. And self-talk is the most powerful and influential mechanism for conscious thought. So if you talk to yourself about the bunker you’re trying to avoid, rather than the green you should be aiming to hit, your unconscious is likely to put you in the bunker! So it’s important to think and talk to yourself positively about your target and your desired shot – the one you visualised earlier, perhaps.

What you say to yourself after you hit your shot is just as important as what you say when you’re hitting the shot. Internal communication has a really significant impact on your mood, attitude and effectiveness, and also on those around you. Berating yourself angrily is only going to make you feel bad. It also means that you’re likely to relive that same feeling the next time you have a similar shot to play and consequently hit an equally bad shot. It’s important to learn from a bad shot, as long as you do it positively and release it to the past where it can’t hurt you. I really love Nick Faldo’s TV commentary about Tiger Woods "Hitting the Reset Button" after a bad shot during the Tour Championship.

Positive self-talk is even better for you than negative self talk is bad for you. So talk positively to yourself about the shot you’re about to play. One of the best ways to do this is to talk to yourself about the shot you want to make, visualise your target and the shot vividly and think about your visualised shot as you hit the ball. It’s difficult to allow negative self-talk to enter your head when you’re focussing completely on something positive.

The same applies to your post shot routine, especially after you’ve hit a good shot. Relish your good shots, feel really good about them, review them vividly in your mind and tell yourself how good they are. That way, you’ll feel really good the next time you have a similar shot.

Now, I think you’ll agree that positive self-talk is what you’re looking for and the only person you can rely on to say those positive things is you.

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