How to Escape The Comparison Trap
Do you compare yourself to other golfers you play?
Have you caught yourself thinking,
“I can’t drive the ball as far as that golfer,”
“My rival has such a better short game than I do.” or
“My friend is a much better golfer than me.”
If comparison thoughts cross your mind, welcome to the comparison trap. The comparison trap is a great hazard you will face as a golfer.
When you compare yourself to others, you look for all the reasons you are not good enough. You look for all the aspects of your game that are lacking and your confidence takes a big hit.
When your confidence is low, it shows up in your game, leading to even lower confidence. You become trapped in this cycle because you are focused on the performance or abilities of other golfers.
The solution to the comparison trap is to focus on your game.
Find ways to improve the weak parts of your game. If your long game needs improvement, take extra time to work on your technique in the driving range. Look for ways to build your physical strength.
Take notice of your strengths. What aspects of your game are positive? Every golfer has strengths. Finding the positive aspects of your game builds confidence.
Compare your game to how you played in the past. Self-comparison is an effective strategy to keep improving your game.
Recognize your growth. Be proud of how far you have come in the sport. You worked hard to develop your game. You deserve the credit. A little bit of credit goes a long way and keeps you motivated to progress further.
Celebrate your successes. Your successes were a result of your efforts. Never trivialize your accomplishments.
When you focus on your game, you fuel your confidence, motivation and desire to work hard.
After winning the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am, his fourth PGA Tour title, Daniel Berger commented on his view of being underrated.
BERGER: “I do feel like I’m underrated, but that’s okay with me. I just think its put a little chip on my shoulder, which is totally fine.”
For Berger, being overlooked fuels motivation, motivation fuels work, work fuels preparation and preparation fuels confidence.
BERGER: “I’ve set some really high goals. I’m not scared to put in the work. I’m not the most talented guy out here. I don’t hit it the farthest, but I’ll outwork anybody. So I think, that is my biggest weapon.”
To maintain stable and high confidence, compare yourself to yourself using your past performances. Give yourself credit for your successes and work hard to improve aspects of your game that need to be further developed. Always keep the focus on you.
Avoiding the Comparison Trap:
Start recognizing your strengths and successes. Most golfers dissect their game and point out every mistake and bad shot after a round.
To combat this, buy a notebook and write down your strengths and successes after each round. No success is too small.
Then, focus on what you want to improve for the next week or practice.
Related Articles for Golf Confidence:
- Improve Self-Talk for Golfers
- Improve Your Mindset During Shot-Making
- How to Stay Confident Even After a Bad Round
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