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Is overconfidence ever an issue?

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  1. 1. Can overconfidence be detrimental to your game?

    • Yes
      11
    • No
      8

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35 posts in this topic

Much has been written about the need to be confident on the golf course. While I understand how much damage any doubt can have on a shot, a balance of reasonable confidence and realistic expectations seem to work best for me.
I wonder if the reason good play is often followed by bad isn't due to overconfidence.
For example, I make a controlled swing with the driver, landing in the center of the fairway only to follow it up with a bad iron shot - seems to happen a lot. Or I might start a round off with with a couple of pars or bogeys (bogeys being good for me) with all my clubs feeling pretty good. Then things go south. I know that as my confidence grows, I start to swing harder which can lead to bad results.
It seems like my good rounds in 2013 were accompanied by controlled emotion - not getting too excited about the good shots or holes and not too P.O.'d about the bad ones. Not sure if the good play is the cause for the easy going attitude or the other way around.
I guess a better question would be how do you control your confidence level going into a round and during the round?
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Over confident isn't a problem for me. I find that emotions are the culprit 99.99% of the time. For example, I hit a great drive on a par 4, walking to my ball, I'm usually over excited, when I get ready to hit my 2nd shot, that excitement causes me to lose my Focus, i.e. I swing to hard, not mindful of my posture, ect, so I hit a crummy approach shot. Then I get angry, and loose all hope of making a decent score. I have never walked to a shot, thinking..I've got this.

As of late, I have curbed my emotions. Now bad shots are a result of poor technique, but I'm working on that.. :-D

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For me if I start out hitting good shots it seems to snowball and I end up having a good round. Last season only choked away 1 round and I think it was due to fatigue.
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Overconfidence - fine if a person can back it up .... More often I see (and suffer from) delusions of grandeur syndrome - try to pull off shots I am not consistently capable of
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More often I see (and suffer from) delusions of grandeur syndrome - try to pull off shots I am not consistently capable of

Funny. Glad I'm not the only one who suffers from this. Not so much on trying an impossible shot (I may have learned that lesson). For me, my expectations run high as a result of a good practice session where I think "I got this down. Scores in the 80's... club championships... here I come!". Delusions of grandeur.

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I guess "over confidence" is a matter of both perspective and thus perception. I said it can be a problem because I equate it with questionable decisions like hitting a poor drive and trying to make up for it by carrying the too far out water hazard with a slammed three wood off a tight lie. That said, making smart decisions about the next shoot and then committing to them completely is a very good thing, IMO.
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I voted, yes.

The reason why overconfidence can kill your game is that you expect too much of your current skills. This leads to frustration, and this kills your decision making.

Humility is the best way to play better. I can trace down every double bogey and blowup hole to overconfidence, whether it is conscious or sub-conscious.

I would even go so far as to say that if I play like I don't care how I do, I play better. Once I start getting pars, and I "expect" to get them is where I start to mishit much worse.

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I can't think of a time when overconfidence hurt my game but I can think of plenty when a lack of confidence hurt my game. Of course both situations are mostly self-fufilling because if I'm hitting the ball well I'm going to be more confident and if I'm hitting the ball like crap I'm going to be less confident. I've blown plenty of shots that I shouldn't have even tried but that falls more under stupidity than overconfidence.
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I can't think of a time when overconfidence hurt my game but I can think of plenty when a lack of confidence hurt my game.

Of course both situations are mostly self-fufilling because if I'm hitting the ball well I'm going to be more confident and if I'm hitting the ball like crap I'm going to be less confident.

I've blown plenty of shots that I shouldn't have even tried but that falls more under stupidity than overconfidence.

My thoughts also, especially the Stupidity part..lol

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I can't think of a time when overconfidence hurt my game but I can think of plenty when a lack of confidence hurt my game.

Of course both situations are mostly self-fufilling because if I'm hitting the ball well I'm going to be more confident and if I'm hitting the ball like crap I'm going to be less confident.

I've blown plenty of shots that I shouldn't have even tried but that falls more under stupidity than overconfidence.


I don't think any bad shot is a result of stupidity. If you expect to make a shot because it looked easy, I consider that overconfidence.

For example, if you are 70 yards from the pin and it is roughly a 50 degree wedge with a nice easy 3/4 swing with very little wrist break.

Do you take 4 or 5 practice swings before executing it? If you are overconfident, then most likely not. You expect to make it pretty easily.

If, on the other hand you take the approach that this is a tough shot you might rehearse it in your mind a few times and do 4 or 5 practice swings to gauge the distance mentally. You don't expect to make it, but you are building the confidence in your body to do it because you are not overconfident that you will make it.

If you are saying that it was stupid not to have rehearsed it and get your body in the groove for the shot, then I call the cause overconfidence.

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Over confident isn't a problem for me. ...

For those of us who seldom break 90, overconfidence is not a problem.

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Much has been written about the need to be confident on the golf course. While I understand how much damage any doubt can have on a shot, a balance of reasonable confidence and realistic expectations seem to work best for me.

I wonder if the reason good play is often followed by bad isn't due to overconfidence.

For example, I make a controlled swing with the driver, landing in the center of the fairway only to follow it up with a bad iron shot - seems to happen a lot. Or I might start a round off with with a couple of pars or bogeys (bogeys being good for me) with all my clubs feeling pretty good. Then things go south. I know that as my confidence grows, I start to swing harder which can lead to bad results.

It seems like my good rounds in 2013 were accompanied by controlled emotion - not getting too excited about the good shots or holes and not too P.O.'d about the bad ones. Not sure if the good play is the cause for the easy going attitude or the other way around.

I guess a better question would be how do you control your confidence level going into a round and during the round?

Um sorry to say this but what your suffering from isn't over confidence, its just an inconsistent swing. Over confidence might be trying a shot you are not able to pull off. The shot to shot struggling isn't over confidence.

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No. My stupid shots were usually the ones that left me saying something like, "Damn. I thought I could hit that low 60 yard hook around those two trees, under that first limb and over the second, and then carry that 200 yards of lake beyond the trees." Confident or not confident, stupid either way.
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Quote:

Originally Posted by Lihu

I don't think any bad shot is a result of stupidity. If you expect to make a shot because it looked easy, I consider that overconfidence.

For example, if you are 70 yards from the pin and it is roughly a 50 degree wedge with a nice easy 3/4 swing with very little wrist break.

Do you take 4 or 5 practice swings before executing it? If you are overconfident, then most likely not. You expect to make it pretty easily.

If, on the other hand you take the approach that this is a tough shot you might rehearse it in your mind a few times and do 4 or 5 practice swings to gauge the distance mentally. You don't expect to make it, but you are building the confidence in your body to do it because you are not overconfident that you will make it.

If you are saying that it was stupid not to have rehearsed it and get your body in the groove for the shot, then I call the cause overconfidence.

No. My stupid shots were usually the ones that left me saying something like, "Damn. I thought I could hit that low 60 yard hook around those two trees, under that first limb and over the second, and then carry that 200 yards of lake beyond the trees."

Confident or not confident, stupid either way.

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Um sorry to say this but what your suffering from isn't over confidence, its just an inconsistent swing. Over confidence might be trying a shot you are not able to pull off. The shot to shot struggling isn't over confidence.

No need to say you're sorry Matt. It would be far worse if you didn't offer an opinion.

While you are 100% correct in your assessment of my inconsistent swing, over confidence can effect my concentration or allow me to swing too hard. In the example I gave, part of the reason a previous shot was successful may have been due to swinging within my capabilities and remembering to keep everything under control. If I become over confident, I tend to swing a bit too freely or with a bit too much power. It's just the way my brain works - or rather doesn't.

I don't have the experience to argue this point, but I would suggest that even if I had a mechanically sound swing, I would still need to forget the previous shot or hole - be it the best ever or worst ever.

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Quote:

Originally Posted by saevel25

Um sorry to say this but what your suffering from isn't over confidence, its just an inconsistent swing. Over confidence might be trying a shot you are not able to pull off. The shot to shot struggling isn't over confidence.

No need to say you're sorry Matt. It would be far worse if you didn't offer an opinion.

While you are 100% correct in your assessment of my inconsistent swing, over confidence can effect my concentration or allow me to swing too hard. In the example I gave, part of the reason a previous shot was successful may have been due to swinging within my capabilities and remembering to keep everything under control. If I become over confident, I tend to swing a bit too freely or with a bit too much power. It's just the way my brain works - or rather doesn't.

I don't have the experience to argue this point, but I would suggest that even if I had a mechanically sound swing, I would still need to forget the previous shot or hole - be it the best ever or worst ever.

I would tend to agree with Matt here. This is a case where if you develop a decent swing, the distances will not vary that much with any given club. You can then depend upon a specific club to give you a specific distance range. Once you have even a little bit of consistency, you will select the proper club and not swing any differently to get the desired distance.

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I would tend to agree with Matt here. This is a case where if you develop a decent swing, the distances will not vary that much with any given club. You can then depend upon a specific club to give you a specific distance range. Once you have even a little bit of consistency, you will select the proper club and not swing any differently to get the desired distance.

Oddly enough, my club distances are the least of my problems. With the exception of hitting the ball fat, my distances are consistent. But I think I get your point. I should be happy with those distances and not try to swing any harder from shot to shot.

As I've said on more than one occasion, you guys are far more knowledgeable and experienced than I am. Whether I agree or disagree with a certain point, I have to respect your opinions and trust you know what you're talking about. Too much disagreement and I just come off as being that f$^&ing; guy.

I will only add that on my way to the golf course, I have to be cautiously optimistic on how I will perform. Overconfidence or false confidence based on my last round, last practice session or last shot has thus far proven to be a sure recipe for disaster. Hopefully you guys are correct and that's been purely coincidental. :beer:

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Lihu

I would tend to agree with Matt here. This is a case where if you develop a decent swing, the distances will not vary that much with any given club. You can then depend upon a specific club to give you a specific distance range. Once you have even a little bit of consistency, you will select the proper club and not swing any differently to get the desired distance.

Oddly enough, my club distances are the least of my problems. With the exception of hitting the ball fat, my distances are consistent. But I think I get your point. I should be happy with those distances and not try to swing any harder from shot to shot.

As I've said on more than one occasion, you guys are far more knowledgeable and experienced than I am. Whether I agree or disagree with a certain point, I have to respect your opinions and trust you know what you're talking about. Too much disagreement and I just come off as being that f$^&ing; guy.

I will only add that on my way to the golf course, I have to be cautiously optimistic on how I will perform. Overconfidence or false confidence based on my last round, last practice session or last shot has thus far proven to be a sure recipe for disaster. Hopefully you guys are correct and that's been purely coincidental.

Yes. I wish I hit my 7 iron 190 yards, but I don't.

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