Mental Tendencies when Playing Shots

Being committed to your shot is perhaps the most important mental tendency in golf. The opposite of commitment is doubt, and as the late Davis Love, Jr. - one of the great teachers of our time - said, “Doubt is the number one cause of missed shots.”

Doubt and indecision over the ball can come from a number of sources including –
  • being unsure about strategy – ie: lay up or go for the green?
  • wondering if you have the right club in your hands
  • questioning how a putt breaks
  • being bogged down with too many swing keys
  • thinking about negative outcomes instead of visualizing a successful shot
Pia Nilsson and Lynn Marriott, of the firm Coaching For The Future, use a brilliant concept they call “Think Box / Decision Line / Play Box” to help golfers learn to mentally commit to their golf shots. Pia and Lynn have helped players of all levels, including Annika Sorenstam, with this concept.

When you're in the “Think Box,” commit to your strategy, what club to hit, the type of shot to play, etc. Then step across the “Decision Line” into the “Play Box” and focus on the target, visualize your shot, then trust your swing.

The key is to be decisive and commit to the shot while you're still in the “Think Box.” This leads to positive energy once you’re over the ball. Watch U.S. Open Champion Jim Furyk go through his pre-shot routine to see a master at committing to all elements of the shot before he gets over the ball.

Note: Info on Pia and Lynn is provided on the Resource Page later in this report.
Assess how strongly committed you feel on most of your shots:
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Comments on your assessment:

Make notes on using this strategy to become more committed to your shots: