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Getting on the Right Path
Change is hard. The longer you have done something, the harder it is to change.
By Anne Marie Goslak

 

I spent nearly ten years, living at the same house. Every day, I'd take the same right out of the subdivision, another right on Ebert , and then a quick left towards my final destination. It was a pattern, a routine, burned into my brain.

One day, I moved. The house I purchased was near by. Daily, I would find myself fighting the urge to turn on to my old road to go "home". I hate to admit it, but on some days, when I was not paying attention, I'd actually make that turn at the Circle K and have to stop myself before I ended up at the wrong house. It's been more than two years since I lived there and as of a month ago, I was STILL fighting the urge to turn the wrong way.

"What does this have to do with golf?" you ask? Change is hard. The longer you have done something, the harder it is to change. Let's say you have a swing flaw. You can not achieve your golf goals if you continue on the path you are on.

Step One: Decide to Change-Get a lesson. Fully understand what you want to change, why you need to change it and how you can best make those changes.

Step Two: Make sure you have some drills or swing cues that will help you learn faster. You might hear the pros say, "Slow and Low". They don't just speak the words and magically that happens. They make that motion and say those words to themselves a thousand times.

The brain links the words with an action or motion. With enough work, a dog learns "Sit" means "put your butt on the ground". Just for fun, I trained a dog of mine to respond to German. She did not really speak German. She just formed a link between, "Sprechen Sie nicht, Hund!" and "She wants me to stop barking now."

Step Three: Do your drills, in slow motion, while saying your prompt, such as "Good turn, hinge up."

Step Four: Repeat step three EVERY DAY for a month or more.

It takes a while to train your body and brain to work together, especially if you have done something wrong for a long time. It can be done, but be INTENTIAL about it.

Well, that opens up the question, doesn't it? If it's so easy, why did I find myself turning right on Ebert when no longer live there? I was not paying attention. I did not form a link. I did not reinforce it.

Finally, I thought, "This is stupid. Stop doing this!" I formed a link that say, "It's OK to pass the K" (There is a Circle K at that intersection) It took me a week to break the habit.

My advice for you today is to give some thought to your golf game. Find out what adjustments you need to make to achieve your golf goals and then be intentional with your training. Life is too short to keep turning down the wrong path. Best of luck as you move closer to your golf goals!

-Anne Marie Goslak