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Plan Your Golf Around Fun

PGA of America
By
Jack Dillon
author "High Fives"

Series: Already Golf

Published: Monday, December 15, 2014 | 10:08 a.m.

Frustration is just about the most used word in golf, with more than four letters.  As an experienced golfer, you want always to be dialed in and playing your best.  You begin every round with high hopes for several pars, a few birdies, and for nothing worse than a bogey.  But as a player who has seen this movie before, you realize the stark reality of just playing to your handicap or worse.

We all know that golf is the greatest game, and yet it is the toughest.  For in every round, we struggle with our toughest foe, that person in the mirror.  This post is about having a good day on the course, no matter the final score.  I say it is time to be up front and honest with that person looking back at you, so that the golf becomes about the good results and not the misplaced hope. 

Managing your expectations is just one part of handling your golf frustration.  The other is to keep working with your PGA or LPGA Professional to tighten up and improve the skills you have, in order to do more than hope your way to lower scores.  As you begin to plan and budget your golf for 2015, think about working closer with your Professional.  Add two or three lessons to the program for next year.  As you build more consistency into your instruction and practice schedules, you will create more opportunities to surpass your managed expectations.  Gaining consistency will no doubt curtail the frustration gene.

After each lesson, plan your practice and play time, incorporating the feedback your Professional has provided.  Work to create a schedule that closely aligns the lesson, practice, and play.  It is important to schedule lessons when you can create this time to make the improvements.  If you can make the time, you can diminish the frustration in your game, adding fun to each day with a club in hand.  The other critical piece is to manage your expectations.  If you are an 18 handicap, do not think about breaking 80 for the first time.  Think about each hole and how to you will prepare for every shot. 

Remember, we are not tour pros.  We play recreational golf.  It should be about adding up the amount of fun, and not the amount of shots.  Plan your 2015 golf around your PGA or LPGA Professional’s support – and around fun – no matter the final score.