In sports, I bet you couldn’t even count how many times someone has suggested or told you to focus. An, oh-so-common, instruction that infrequently comes with true instruction… is one suppose to know how to focus? It is a baffling concept for many, mostly because the human conscious mind has a tendency to wander, get distracted, over-analyze, get caught up in the past, worry about the future, and continually rationalize. A seemingly endless cycle, that only gets exasperated with the fact that the conscious mind likes to daydream and will only stay present on the present moment if it finds it fascinating, new information, or has been trained to do so.
Think about the first time you learned how to swing a club, drive a car, or any other new skill – your mind was fully present, alert, and tuned-in. Now think of what happens when you are sitting in a classroom listening to a lecture, driving down a long, straight highway, or engaged in a repetitive action- your mind (specifically your conscious mind) checks out. As you know, this doesn’t leave a person unconscious, it just keeps one from fully participating in the present moment.
So, what is one to do? The first step is always to decide you want to make a change, to become aware of what is truly holding you back and feel like you are ready to do something about it. Start observing your thoughts and your level of presence in situations – both on and off the golf course. Recognize that you can control where your focus is and repeatedly practice bringing it into the current moment. True focus is extremely important for one to excel in golf, just as it is in life, so if you struggle with this self help technique, find a good mental trainer who is experienced in the concepts of mind.
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