Although golf is one of the most social games to pay it can also be one of the toughest to play when faced with a playing partner who is either constantly moaning or struggling with their golf game.
So how can you deal with your own emotions and those negative vibes coming from you playing partner?
This is a tough one to answer, but I will do my best to give you the best information that I can to help you deal with the negativity which comes from your playing partners, rather than dealing with the stress and strains that are already associated with your own game and possible struggles.
We all know that we can react to the vibes and energy from our surroundings and this is definitely the case when strolling the fairways. A great example that we have all experienced is playing with better players and how this can help us to improve our own games.
But the negativity of our playing partners is more subtle, we almost disregard their antics as we “get used” to it, the negativity from playing partners is more damaging than you think.
The first thing to notice is the amount of time it takes before you begin to feel as though you are being affected by a playing partner. For some, just the thought of having to play with a certain person can immediately affect the way they approach their games. I actually know people that will refuse to play simply because a person is not to their liking, which is understandable for a friendly match, but for a tournament it is just ludicrous.
When you notice that someone else´s mood is affecting you there are two things that you could try to combat the issue.
Firstly you can do the unsocial thing and make sure you stay as far away as possible from the person in question. This can be a little harder than it may sound, as you can only stay apart as you walk down the fairway, which will give you time to concentrate on your own game and focus your thoughts. If it helps avoid watching their shots and commenting to them about the game. Just forget it, think about something else if you do not want to focus too long on your own game. Either is fine, but just make sure that your focus is on each individual shot that you are playing, remember it is your game and you are in control of what you are doing.
The second thing to do, is to try and encourage this person who is having a nightmare on the links. Try to build some positivity in them which will in turn build positivity in your own game. Do not be dismissive of this person, especially if they form part of your regular fourball, give them some support and try to encourage them out of the hollow that they have found themselves in during this particular round, you never know when it may be your turn to face the toughest of rounds.
One thing you should never ever do, on the golf course, is try to offer technical advice, this will only cause more issues for the person suffering on the links. After the round in the 19th hole, you may want to suggest that they head down to the practice range to try and iron out some of their issues or head down to the local professional to get some advice on how to deal with their struggles, but never do this on the golf course, they have enough to think about already.
Until Next time,
The Golf Swing Doctor
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