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Ten Reasons Why Winners Win - Quick Commentary

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Written out and modified slightly for my golf team (with some disclaimers about how I don't buy into this stuff very much):

10 Reasons Why Winners Win

  1. Winners are driven by a love of winning, not by a fear of losing.
  2. Winners remain relentlessly optimistic at all times.
  3. Winners focus on solutions when things go wrong.
  4. Winners are fueled by feelings of excitement more than nervousness.
  5. Winners know confidence comes from preparation.
  6. Winners surround themselves with like-minded positive people.
  7. Winners expect to win each time they compete.
  8. Winners slow down the game in their mind and think clearly.
  9. Winners focus more precisely as the game gets bigger.
  10. Winners make losing not an option - they either win or they learn.

© Dr. Jarrod Spencer, 2019, Mind of the Athlete, LLC.


Here's the problem I have with a few of these…

  1. I've heard the opposite from some people, some psychologists, and some very successful people, too.
  2. Ha! Bull.
  3. Sometimes that's true. Other times it's not.
  4. Tiger said he was super nervous all the time, it showed that he cared.
  5. Notice how I modified it for my players? Excessive is by definition "wrong" because it means "too much."
  6. Not really true, and many can't choose who they're around.
  7. Not in golf. And not in other sports either; you'd have to be delusional, especially in team sports.
  8. Okay, but… that could just be a skill. I don't think you can try to make the game slow down.
  9. Okay?
  10. What claptrap is that? Of course losing is an option. It's not a good option, but again, you're delusional. Plus, you can learn from winning, too.

 

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I think these type's of things are a lot of BS, this is similar to people writing about what it takes to be a leader.  You can check off everything on a checklist, but it still doesn't mean you can accomplish it.

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Radio Lab did a show about lying and they talked about self-lying and that in a very small study, the best swimmers were the ones who consistently lied to themselves.

lying-200.jpg

Can we lie to ourselves? If you are the liar, wouldn't you know the truth?

 

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I've read - and understand - how someone like Tiger Woods actually has to blame the club or mud or the wind or whatever to protect his ego so he can continue to believe he's not at fault, and to perform best.

This is in reference to the swimmer's post by @krupa.

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1 hour ago, iacas said:

...blame the club or mud or the wind or whatever to protect his ego so he can continue to believe he's not at fault, and to perform best.

Funny, i play with a lot of people that do the same thing.

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I feel silly not blaming myself when I hit a bad shot. But yes, you can't change your style/thoughts zero to 100, but having these 10 steps in mind, could change your behaviour on the course, I feel like. 

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Those 10 reason totally discribed TWoods during his run of best playing days. 

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As to point #4. I remember reading, quite some time ago, some comments from one of the old time crooners, it might have been Tony Bennett, about "butterflies" before a performance. He said that if he didn't feel the butterflies, he knew it would be a lousy show! Butterflies meant that he was "up" for the performance. 

I also remember reading an article back when the "beta blocker" scandal was hitting the PGA Tour. Some people claimed it was a performance enhancer. A pro interviewed for the article claimed it was anything but! He had a valid medical reason for taking them, and it led to one of his worst years on tour. When he managed to play himself into the running, the drug didn't allow him to get "up" for the round. It smoothed him out to the point where he became too mellow.

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What a horrible list, seriously. It's not even sports psychology, it's just bs. Most of the stuff on the list you can't "make" happen.

Do people honestly think DJ, Rory, Tiger, Koepka, all think the same in competition? Of course not. They win because they are extremely good at the physical part of swinging a metal stick and know how to accept and anticipate the ups and downs that come with golf. Some days they are mentally "strong" and win and other days they are mentally weak and still win. 

Not to say mental game doesn't play a role but I'll take DJ's swing and a crappy mental game over my swing and the best mental game ever 😉

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What a load of BS.

It's like someone saying AFTER they've made a fortune or won something that anyone can do it and that you just have to "believe".

It's like the horse manure theory of Malcolm Gladwell that that fool, dan, of The Dan Plan swallowed hook line and sinker.

Methinks that some of these "sports psychologists" have never played any sport at any level.

Edited by leftybutnotPM

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Well Bryson apparently has taken #8 quite seriously. 

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1 hour ago, Vinsk said:

Well Bryson apparently has taken #8 quite seriously. 

That is how he hopes to win, slowing the game down so much his competitors lose their minds.

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I read the book "Zen Golf" a few years back and it pretty much says these 10 things.  These 10 things are good advice, but #5 is, in my opinion, very important.  You need to feel you've prepared as well as you can.   But if you're going to be good an executing these 10 things, you have to practice them just like anything else you wish to be good at.

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19 hours ago, ghalfaire said:

I read the book "Zen Golf" a few years back and it pretty much says these 10 things.  These 10 things are good advice, but #5 is, in my opinion, very important.  You need to feel you've prepared as well as you can.   But if you're going to be good an executing these 10 things, you have to practice them just like anything else you wish to be good at.

+1.  You can't expect to do well unless you have prepared in advance.  I see this a lot with weekend duffers.  They complain about bad shots and what not, but they never practice.  The only time they pick up the club is on the day they play.  And they expect to play well.

Only a very minority of people can do this as these are the ones with natural talent and don't need practice to be good at golf.  But 99%+ of the population needs to practice to be good at this game.  

Like everything else in life, you can't expect to be good at something without preparing for it.

As for #1, I agree with this, but I don't necessarily agree it should be on the top of the list.  When I play with my buddies, I notice there are two groups: one who doesn't want to lose and the other who wants to win.  At a first glance this looks to be the same.  But how they approach the game is VERY different.  For example, the ones who doesn't want to lose, are timid when it comes to putting.  They want to "nestle" up to the hole so they won't three putt.  This means they rarely make the putt.  The ones who wants to win are aggressive with putting.  They make sure that the ball has a chance to go in the hole when they putt.  Sometime this means they have a relatively long comebacker putt.  But they tend to make some of those aggressive putts.  They want to win at all cost, even if it means they have a longer putt coming back.

Tiger was like that in his prime, he still is - except his putts are not falling.

Ever since I noticed this difference, I changed my attitude to win rather than not to lose.  Surprisingly, I began winning more and more times compared to five years ago.

As they say, "good defense is a good offence."  

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#5 has some merit. Louis Pasteur said "Fortune favors the prepared mind". I do not believe, however, that being prepared has anything to do with confidence. I've seen people that work their butts off just go to shit when the chips are down, and I've seen the opposite as well. 

My daughter is a heck of a basketball player. She works harder than anyone I know. We've spent thousands of dollars on trainers, etc. The only thing holding her back a bit is her confidence. 

The rest of that shit is exactly that..shit. 

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On 8/28/2019 at 7:16 AM, Yukari said:

+1.  You can't expect to do well unless you have prepared in advance.  I see this a lot with weekend duffers.  They complain about bad shots and what not, but they never practice.  The only time they pick up the club is on the day they play.  And they expect to play well.

Only a very minority of people can do this as these are the ones with natural talent and don't need practice to be good at golf.  But 99%+ of the population needs to practice to be good at this game.  

Like everything else in life, you can't expect to be good at something without preparing for it.

As for #1, I agree with this, but I don't necessarily agree it should be on the top of the list.  When I play with my buddies, I notice there are two groups: one who doesn't want to lose and the other who wants to win.  At a first glance this looks to be the same.  But how they approach the game is VERY different.  For example, the ones who doesn't want to lose, are timid when it comes to putting.  They want to "nestle" up to the hole so they won't three putt.  This means they rarely make the putt.  The ones who wants to win are aggressive with putting.  They make sure that the ball has a chance to go in the hole when they putt.  Sometime this means they have a relatively long comebacker putt.  But they tend to make some of those aggressive putts.  They want to win at all cost, even if it means they have a longer putt coming back.

Tiger was like that in his prime, he still is - except his putts are not falling.

Ever since I noticed this difference, I changed my attitude to win rather than not to lose.  Surprisingly, I began winning more and more times compared to five years ago.

As they say, "good defense is a good offence."  

I agree with much of what you said, but I doubt people who want to win are always aggressive.   I believe they "choose their battles" if you will.  Playing on greens that are 12 or so on the "meter" with a 2 foot downhill, but straight, putt, I'd recommend caution.  There are other examples of where caution might be called for, but I think you get my point.  So while I do believe the "want to win group" plays aggressive compared to the "don't want to lose group",  they do also pick spots where they leave the driver in the bag, so to speak.

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It’s all hogwash. One reason why winners win:

They’re better.

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