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The "Stop Conning Yourself" Thread


iacas

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I have and continue to con myself into believing that I will get to be a scratch golfer without professional instruction.  Why?  Because of the occasional round when I break or shoot par.  Been relying on natural ability my whole golfing career without taking lessons.  I feel like I might be at my current potential without help.  However, I am simply too lazy and reticent to take the time to get golf instruction.  I would much rather play then spend the time at a driving range...in addition, I simply don't practice.  If I have the time, i go play a round and consider that my "practice"

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I never think of myself as a good golfer either. I know my game has flaws and I'm the exact opposite of the golfer mentioned in the OP. A few weeks ago, I played in a 4some in a team match with 3 of the best players in my club. When we finished, one of them mentioned it was the second time in a month he'd played with me and I'd broken 80 both times. The other 2 then went on to say I had proven to them that I was a much better player then my hcap says. They all saw my swing wasn't "perfect", but felt my course management, and lack of confidence in my game were the only things keeping me from being at least a high single digit hcap player. I didn't tell them, but my hope is to be better then that. LOL  I did however start to realize their point about negativity, as in stepping into a shot thinking how to avoid hitting a poor one instead of planning for a good one, was a very good one. Golf is just so different to me then the games I played when younger, and because of my inexperience, I have trouble dealing with its frustrations. My first instinct is to get more aggressive, swing faster, try harder to make up for a mistake when something goes wrong. Changing this thought (or lack of) process is something I know I have to do if I'm doing to have any hope of getting better. I try not to kid myself about my game, in fact I think like a lot of golfers, I find the game way too hard to ever feel that way.

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  • 1 month later...

Biggest self-cons for me are:

1) That I ever truly intend to practice with purpose.

Unfortunately, I still waste a lot of time bashing balls. I know it’s bad for my game, but I just love doing it. One day I may finally decide that I love getting better more than hitting ball, after ball, after ball....

2) The common one mentioned here that my best shots are representative of my current skill level. 

I know the truth is that I hit way too many horrid shots every single round, and until I improve my swing enough, I will continue to. 

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  • 1 month later...

I have no delusions of adequacy.  I know how far I have to go to become decent.

On the flip side, I have played with more than a few people who say things like "I usually shoot in the 90s" or something like that.  Then, when you go out on the course, you realize how they "shoot in the 90s". 

Bad tee shot?  Hit another, no penalty. 

Bad lie?  Kick it out to a better lie. 

5' putt?  "that's a gimme". 

OOB?  Drop, no penalty.

etc.

And then there is the creative stroke count.  They shoot a 7 and record a 5, somehow forgetting how many strokes they took.

Edited by millsan1
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6 minutes ago, millsan1 said:

I have no delusions of adequacy.  I know how far I have to go to become decent.

On the flip side, I have played with more than a few people who say things like "I usually shoot in the 90s" or something like that.  Then, when you go out on the course, you realize how they "shoot in the 90s". 

Bad tee shot?  Hit another, no penalty. 

Bad lie?  Kick it out to a better lie. 

5' putt?  "that's a gimme". 

OOB?  Drop, no penalty.

etc.

And then there is the creative stroke count.  They shoot a 7 and record a 5, somehow forgetting how many strokes they took.

Yes, plenty of those people out there. I have no problem if someone deludes themselves into thinking they are ok at golf even if they don't play by the rules. Just don't compete, keep a handicap, or tell me their 89 was better than my 92. 

 

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We do like to con ourselves out there don't we. When I was a kid I used to shoot in the low to mid eighties. I always said if I could putt I would be dangerous. I have since figured out what I was doing wrong with my putts I was in to big of a hurry to putt. Of course by that time the rest of my game went all to hell. I am a lot happier now because I stopped looking at the score card and this got me out of my head. I can shoot in the mid 90's now the price of getting older yea well. I no longer have to con myself I know my sucks now and I really am not all that worried about it. Well maybe I pump up the good shot a little, but who doen't right.

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 weeks later...
On 6/19/2018 at 1:22 PM, millsan1 said:

I have no delusions of adequacy.  I know how far I have to go to become decent.

On the flip side, I have played with more than a few people who say things like "I usually shoot in the 90s" or something like that.  Then, when you go out on the course, you realize how they "shoot in the 90s". 

Bad tee shot?  Hit another, no penalty. 

Bad lie?  Kick it out to a better lie. 

5' putt?  "that's a gimme". 

OOB?  Drop, no penalty.

etc.

And then there is the creative stroke count.  They shoot a 7 and record a 5, somehow forgetting how many strokes they took.

Played with folks on Tuesday. I shot a 99, counted everything. My down fall was 6 or 7 skulls. they were pounding balls into the water, trees, skulls and one guy tells us he has shot a 91, with 8 pars. 

 

Keeping track of my own handicap really keeps me honest. 

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15 minutes ago, uitar9 said:

Played with folks on Tuesday. I shot a 99, counted everything. My down fall was 6 or 7 skulls. they were pounding balls into the water, trees, skulls and one guy tells us he has shot a 91, with 8 pars. 

 

Keeping track of my own handicap really keeps me honest. 

Funny how many people out there know how to make those 7 stroke pars 🙄

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I was skimming this thread, and saw my own post from March 30. I wish I could say I've since changed the negative thought processes before shots, but that would be a lie, at least within one part of my game. My scoring the past few months has never been more consistently mediocre. I feel I've improved my ball striking. My putting has been as good as I ever remember it being. However, my short game from about 30 yards and in has been a horror show. Skulls, chunks, shanks... I'm a mess. I've become numb to shooting 86's, with several holes taking 4,5,6 shots to get down from just off the green. Bunkers are not a problem, but chips and pitches, which everyone keeps telling me are "simple" strokes, are a crap shoot. I've taken short game lessons, watched videos, read instruction books. I have a short game practice area at my range, and always leave there thinking I've solved it... my short game is back. The next day before a round, I'll finish my warmup with about 20 or so chip and pitch shots, almost every one is fine. I go out and begin my round, and every time I miss a green, I pull my wedge thinking 'I've got this",.... then at some point in every round it becomes apparent I don't, and another possible sub 80 round turns into 85. The last round I played was a perfect example. On a good course I had 40 on the front, pars on 10 and 11, and yet shot 48 on the back for 88. Out of nowhere, shanks, chunks, 3 putts caused by skulled pitch shots. Basically my short game version of the movie Groundhog Day.  

Edited by GrandStranded
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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm pretty new here, but I will give it a go.  I don't have a handicap.  I seem to shoot in the 80s a lot, but that is on courses I know well and they aren't exactly beastly either.

1.  I will never really be able to fix my problem on my first move on the downswing.  Maybe it's because I don't go about fixing it in an intentional way that will produce results or maybe I am simply not athletic enough to relearn the swing despite my repeated efforts.  A little more distance off the tee would likely make a modest difference in my score, but that swing has always been beyond my talents, hard to imagine that changing.  I know what to do, just can't seem to do it.

2.  I will likely never get better because routinely breaking 80 means you are really, really good at this game and I am simply not really, really good at this game.  No matter how much I practice:  I make bad swings, I make bad putting strokes, I make poor contact on chips, and I make boneheaded decisions on the course.  My bad shots get slightly better and may come slightly less often (or not honestly), but they still come and they still take par out of the equation and leave me scrambling for a bogey or worse.  I've reached the point where I think, if I made fewer mistakes I would no longer be the golfer that I obviously am.  🙂

3.  My desire to play well leads to nerves and lapses in focus that no doubt cost me a few strokes here and there.  I am not sure I can change that.  I mean, I would like to play well, so I don't think pretending I don't will be much help.  I've never been great at fooling myself.

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On 8/11/2018 at 12:16 AM, GrandStranded said:

On a good course I had 40 on the front, pars on 10 and 11, and yet shot 48 on the back for 88. Out of nowhere, shanks, chunks, 3 putts caused by skulled pitch shots. Basically my short game version of the movie Groundhog Day.  

I experience this and for me I think it boils down to losing my concentration. If I am playing a bit too much golf and start be just "going through the motions" or for whatever reason lose the necessary focus, my game can fall apart. I need to block out everything but the task at hand. I walk up to the green before a pitch shot to make sure I understand how much green exactly is between the fringe and the pin. Which way will the ball break once landing? Where does the ball need to land? It often doesn't happen as I expect, but the extra effort requires me to focus and that focus helps improve the execution. Breaking 80 consistently for many of us is a matter of a stroke here and there. As we improve it gets harder and harder to find that stroke to eliminate. 

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My long game is not as good as my rounds earlier in the summer would indicate. I kind of knew I was falling back to earth from the last couple of rounds I played before I got hurt, but now I'm back to where I was at the beginning of the season before I started timing everything well.

I'll use it as motivation to get back to diligent practice.

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Okay, I wanna jump in here.

This is how I con myself. Before I play I grab a scorecard, or ideally the course book. I go through each hole. "Hmm.... I need to hit 3 wood here.... I should hit hybrid here.... I should tee off with the 5 iron here... Jeez, this hole is really tight, but short enough I probably should hit 6 iron off the tee..." etc.... 

Then, only about an hour later I'm out on the course pulling driver on every single non-par 3 on the course. Even when I'm spraying the damned thing all over the course. I can't help but pull driver...basically, I'm an idiot. 

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