What do you do when you just don’t feel like your heart is in the game? Do you know how to be motivated to play great golf?
A professional golf client recently asked…
Hey Shannon. I don’t know why, but I have zero motivation to be here this week. I just wanted to see what your thoughts were and what I should do about it.
This is not the first time I’ve received this question from a client. We all have days when we just don’t FEEL as inspired about what we need to go do.
But many people have a bad habit of letting their feelings drive their decisions in life and in golf. That’s why there are a lot of golfers who play at their average, and rarely catch glimpses of what it’s like to play with excellence.
And let me be clear, excellence has nothing to do with being perfect. It’s about being determined to put your best out there on the course every chance you get, REGARDLESS of how you feel.
Being led by your feelings will prevent you from performing consistently or at a high level.Being led by your feelings will prevent you from performing consistently or at a high level in #golf. - #playgreatgolf Click To Tweet
Think about it.
Your feelings can be as variable as the wind. Allowing yourself to get tossed about by them will only lead to frustration when you begin to get very unreliable results. If you’re going to wait until you feel like it before holding yourself accountable to deliver your best, then you’ll likely miss out on opportune moments to achieve great things.
But the issue isn’t about being motivated or unmotivated. Great athletes aren’t great because they’re unnaturally more motivated than the rest of us.
Everyone’s motivated all the time.
Let me give you an example…
You can be motivated to short cut your pre-shot routine just as much as your playing partner might be motivated to be very deliberate with hers.
It’s about being motivated to do the right things, especially when you DON’T FEEL like it.
Golfers who play with excellence do so because they CHOOSE to do whatever is necessary to create and maintain the thoughts that catapult them into action no matter how they feel in the moment — that’s what it means to be motivated to do the right things.
So why does it feel so hard sometimes to get motivated to do what we know must be done, and then to consistently do it to the very best of our ability?! It feels hard because we’ve trained ourselves to take a back seat to our feelings.
Being motivated to excellence isn’t hard to do. The hard part is making the decision to rise above our feelings that can keep us performing at average.
There are some big indicators I want you to be on the lookout for that may reveal where your motivations are misplaced —
- Your intensity level fluctuates from day to day in practice and play
- You tend to procrastinate when it comes to doing things you don’t want to do
- Though set in advance, you see no problem deviating from your game plan unnecessarily
- You operate with a variable daily routine
- You allow your feelings to alter your course in order to avoid being in a position or situation where you are uncomfortable.
Being motivated to excellence leaves absolutely zero tolerance for excuses.
It’s tragic that only a small percentage of the world’s population is actually regularly performing with excellence. But you can be among that powerful elite percentage when you choose to be motivated by the right things.
If you keep wasting time in the average lane of life and golf, rather than being purpose-driven and motivated to do great things every day, it’s going to take much longer for you to get where you want to go. Discipline, intention, and passion are the motivators that drive high level performers.
Below are a few ways you can start cultivating the motivation to do great things —
1. Stay focused on your why
To live a life that matters, and to really play your best golf, you have to have a well-defined WHY. Drawing from Simon Sinek’s work, your WHY is the purpose, cause or belief that inspires you.
In golf, having a WHY helps you practice and play with purpose that focuses your daily activities. Golf without a WHY that guides you in a specific direction of achievement is like a ship without a rudder that goes here and there, tossed about by the waves.
Your WHY isn’t forever cast in stone, but can evolve as you pursue it. So don’t be afraid to put a stake in the ground around what it is you really want to achieve in your game. The only question is how motivated you will be to go after it.
2. Know your strengths so you can operate in your sweet spot
I often talk to my clients about narrowing their attention to what’s working in their game before they head out to play, or begin prepping for a tournament. This focus enables them to strategize the best way to leverage the current strong parts of their game that they can use to attack the course they are preparing to play.
It’s important to be motivated in the right way for your rounds. What that means is deciding to leverage your strengths to play great one shot at a time, rather than being motivated to avoid messing up.
Can you see the difference?
You can choose to be motivated to play your best options in the bag, or you can choose to be motivated by your fear of making mistakes and pick shots that are safe rather than smart. The former will produce a more free swing, and the latter, a tension-ridden swing.
Operating in your sweet spot where you can swing freely with unshakable confidence may mean hitting a shorter shot off the tee, or not going for every green in regulation.
3. Measure your progress regularly
Nothing derails good motivation faster than lack of feedback.
You’ve got to work on your game with a specific ROI in mind, or you’ll never achieve the results you desire. You can do this by putting measurables in place to track your progress.
When you can see that you are making progress toward your goal, you will likely be motivated to double down on your efforts to keep making those gains.Being motivated to excellence leaves absolutely zero tolerance for complacency and excuses. #playgreatgolf Click To Tweet
Being motivated to excellence starts with —
- knowing your WHY
- leveraging your strengths to play in the sweet spot of your game
- and consistently measuring your progress
I hope you found this tip helpful. These simple strategies will help you to stay on track all the way to the finish line.
Are you motivated to apply some or all of them to your game? Do you have a motivation strategy that helps you stay on track?
I would love to hear from you so please leave me a comment below. And if you know someone who could benefit from this post, please share it.
Now get out there and PLAY GREAT!
What would it be worth to you to start hitting more consistently solid shots?
Don’t let another day go by without investigating what working with me could do to improve your game. CLICK HERE to learn how you can start playing consistently from tee to green so you can lower your handicap and love your game.