I am qualifying for a Nationwide event today…

…and next Monday as well. Today is near me in So Cal and next week is in Nor Cal.

I have a few things to say. I am trilled with how my study of the swing has educated me on how to exercise my own swing demons and get myself off swingcrack. I am essentially off it and on most days, my swing feels great.

I either hit it like a Tour player (Nationwide at the very minimum) and on bad days, I miss it in play. Something I was sorely missing in my better days of nearly being a world class player of PGA Tour caliber.

What is really disappointing to me is my inability to mentally get past the failures I have experienced during my swing troubles. Instead of trying to hit good shots, I am still trying to avoid bad shots.

For those of you who think it’s a deficiency in the mental toughness category, I would offer this. I experience the same “lack of trust” when I am out by myself dropping multiple balls and hitting shots on the course. It happens almost as often on shots that fit my eye as ones that don’t. It’s a habit…and a bad habit. I have steered the ball around the course for so long, that is what I still am programmed to do. It is not fear, not in the slightest. What’s the big deal? If I don’t qualify, I am no worse off than I was when the day started.

I am not being a hypocrite, I am practicing what I am preaching, making an effort every day and I am noticing I am better…but far from the level I need to be to play optimum golf. If I could play with the same reckless abandon I did 15 years ago, I would be playing some world class golf.

Hand wringing aside, I need to try and shoot 62 and if I shoot 78, BFD.

These wormy 69-72’s I have been shooting are driving me nuts. The 75 I shot in Phoenix was much of the same, with two unfortunate breaks. Too many routine pars and not enough birdies.

I would prefer 68 with 10 birdies and 3 doubles, versus 70 with 2 birdies and 16 pars. The first one is easier to fix.

The course I play today essentially has OB left and right on every hole. If you see me shoot 75-80, the steers were in play. My goal during the PAT was to play 36 holes with one ball and that got me in a mindset to play some decent golf. Today my goal is to avoid the steering wheel and just play.

I am going to make the score I shoot a complete non factor. My habit on a course like this was to look at the white stakes and forget where I was actually trying to hit the ball. We all know how that sort of thinking affects the human brain.

If I make it today, great, but I am actually going to use today to setup next week. Fire at will and get myself comfortable trying to hit a good shot, instead of avoiding bad ones. That is the last step I need to make in order to become a player again.

The best analogy I can give is someone with a good resume being turned down for every job he interviews for. He starts to expect to be turned down and the interviewers sense that. I need to start expecting to play well. I played poorly for so long, I still show up to course “hoping” to play well. If you saw some of the golf I have played the last few months, you would slap my face with a glove…or worse, knock me over the head with an LW to knock some sense into me.

Anyone invent selective lobotomies yet?

I have said this before, I will fail until I succeed. Along the way, I will learn more about golf and how to get better and use my knowledge to make others better.

Until I make this step, I am just a guy who is sometimes decent, but should get a real job (which I at least have now). If I can make this step, I can be the real life Roy Hobbs…only without the bullet in my abdomen from Barbara Hershey. My equivalent is an overloaded memory center with a certain nuked 5-iron from a final round lodged in the middle. Maybe I can be the real life Nuke Leloosh too.

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5 Comments

  1. Jason

    Good Luck Monte. I’m cheering for you. I KNOW you can do it.

    Jason.

    Reply
  2. Robert Johansson

    Your past failures dosnt equal your future.

    I talk to people and its often about performance getting things done perfectly, most get stuck in the process of the swing, get addicted to make it perfect and forget dude its about the destination, hit that green make the putt its that easy. I get a lot of jam for telling people stuff like that they tell me it cant be that easy and I go, well prove me wrong then? They scoffer off mumbling something under their chin.

    Do you have fun playing?
    I would say walking out there, playing the best golf I could do is like having a supermodel sucking me off. I just like that idea, not sure if I want to be sucked of by such a skinny girl but I guess its better than a guy at least unless one have tried it so they tell me anyway.

    Walking the course, playing the game, and having fun expressing oneself, this is how good I am doing what I do best playing the game my way. If we let the past define our future, or how to avoid the challenge to play our best just because we failed before is no way to play golf.

    I want to hear some cracks in the back from walking straight out there, I want to hear the joy of the blood pumping doing what one loves to do. I wanna feel the line as I putt and smoking the ball from tee making it fun to be alive.

    I focus on playing my best golf ever for 18 holes, no more no less. I keep that in focus, nothing else gets in the way, not the past not the present, the future reference playing all out holding nothing back and then as I walk home I know one thing I gave it my all this day. Then slowly I rise to the challenge and smile as I walk hitting the shots playing the course the only way I know how to do it, proudly.

    Good Luck.

    Reply
  3. Ron

    Hey Good Luck! Stay mentally the case you wrote in your blog..LOL

    Reply
  4. Ant Lockyer

    Good luck.

    Reply

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