Many golfers intrinsically understand that their attitude controls their destiny on the course, and can make or break them when their score counts, but it was interesting how insistent Utley and Shannon were that golfers must believe they are good putters regardless of their daily outcome. They reminded me of something in my own game that I’d like to discuss with you, and hopefully it will help you become a better putter in the process.
When discussing the belief system of the brain and body, I think back to a book I read when I was trying to play golf for a living called Psychocybernetics by Dr. Maxwell Maltz. He was a plastic surgeon who said the way you see yourself influences your actions and shapes your entire future.
Let me paraphrase a passage in his book that hit home with me.
A patient walked into his office with what she perceived to be a crooked nose, and that made her very insecure about her looks. Measuring the amount of the misalignment, Dr. Maltz noticed that it was hardly noticeable to the human eye, but in the mind of the patient it was huge. He went on to explain to the patient that what she wanted him to alter wasn’t worth the time and money, so he initially refused to do the surgery.
The patient was persistent, however, and he complied. What Maltz noticed over the course of her recovery was that her entire perception of herself changed, and she began to feel better about herself. He found that over time that her life began to improve; she was more successful in her personal life, and married a handsome husband years later.
Her perception of herself was better, and thus she became more open to allowing things to happen within her life. He concluded that a her perception of herself determined her path of your life, and more broadly, if you see yourself as beautiful you act beautiful, and so on.
Now, I am not suggesting that you can just think yourself into being a great golfer if you have terrible mechanics; however, I will say that if you took Brad Faxon or Brian Gay’s attitude regarding putting and put it into the brains of most PGA Tour players’ brain they would become instantly better with no mechanical change whatsoever.
Obviously, you need some type of mechanical competency in order for this to work, but after that I believe it is all about attitude and what you as the player allow yourself to come to believe as true. Let me give you a personal example that supports my thoughts.
Thanks for reading – A change in attitude can improve your game – Here’s how!