The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate-Oprah Winfrey
“Man, if only I could just bottle up that shot and use it whenever I want, I’d be on tour!.”
I think every golfer has said or heard this phrase/joke a few times on the course as they stand there, mid club twirl, admiring their shot. The best gift for a golfer for Christmas would be that perfect shot wrapped up nicely with a bow. This got me thinking beyond the joking nature and into the roots of the mentality.
What if I told you there was a way to bottle up that purely struck 9-iron stinger shot with that perfect dollar bill divot? That there was a way to bottle those up and leave behind the awful 9-iron heavy pulled shot? Oh boy, will your golf handicap thank you.
Well, ladies and gents… I’m here to tell you that every round that you play, you actually have a bottle attached to your golf bag, and every shot gets bottled up for safe keeping. Easy. Here’s the catch: the shot gets bottled up every time you have an emotional reaction. Sounds great right?
Here’s a scenario:
You’re on the 1st tee box and you push your drive 30 yd right into the trees. You know its going to be a horrible shot before your club makes contact with the ball. As soon as you see the ball begin to go right of your target, your heart sinks because you know its only going to continue to stray from your desired path. You slam the club against the ground in frustration. Anger begins to seep and stir within because you practiced incredibly hard on the range all week to eliminate that very shot. You wait for your buddies to tee off and then walk defeated off the first tee, hoping you left that bad shot behind.
The next shot you have is 170 yd away from the green with a large willow tree smack in the middle of your line. In order to reach the green, you would need to execute a low fade. There isn’t much room for error but you decide to take the aggressive alternative anyways. You go through your pre-shot routine, take a final look at the target and pull the trigger. From the moment the club face made contact with the ball, you knew it was going to be a brilliant shot. It hits the front of the green, takes the side spin and rolls up to three feet of the hole. It was probably one of the most heroic shots you’ve ever pulled off! Your buddies from the fairway are cheering and hooting because they’ve never seen, let alone pull off that kind of shot before. You take one look at your club, figured that it made up for that awful tee shot and go on to make your birdie.
Now, which shot did we bottle up?
How often, not just in golf but in life as well, do we react emotionally to the negative moments and fail to do so in the positive moments.
How many of us get so stressed and angry in unpleasant moments, such as when we lock our keys in the car or when we get cut off during rush hour traffic but fail to celebrate the moments when the stoplight remains green, the nice man lets us cut into his lane despite heavy traffic or eat our favorite dessert. How many times do we have no emotional reaction when we hit a fantastic golf shot?
When we do that, we tend to experience more unpleasant moments because those are the ones our mind will retain and less pleasant moments because those are the ones our mind releases. Our emotions have the power to influence our mentality, wellness and overall life. How can we expect to lower our golf handicap if we continue retaining our bad shots?
So the next time you’re going about life, think about whether you would like to bottle up that awful 30 yard push tee shot or that amazing 170 yd low fade recovery shot.