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The "Stop Conning Yourself" Thread


iacas

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26 minutes ago, mcanadiens said:

The pressure you feel on those pitch and chip shots when you're already on four is a whole different thing than when you're three.

I don't understand. Every shot counts as 1 on the scorecard. Your goal should always be to get the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible from where you currently are. If you are chipping for bogey, you should challenge yourself to save a double which is much better than a triple or a . If you are chipping for birdie, challenge yourself to save par. Stop beating yourself up after par. As a 20 HCP, "your par" is actually bogey on most holes and double on the harder holes.

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40 minutes ago, CarlSpackler said:

I don't understand. Every shot counts as 1 on the scorecard. Your goal should always be to get the ball in the hole in as few strokes as possible from where you currently are. If you are chipping for bogey, you should challenge yourself to save a double which is much better than a triple or a . If you are chipping for birdie, challenge yourself to save par. Stop beating yourself up after par. As a 20 HCP, "your par" is actually bogey on most holes and double on the harder holes.

Sure. At this level bogey is effectively par. So I still have a pretty good shot at it if I'm chipping 3. If we are chipping stroke 4 that's pretty tough. 

Which, gets us at the way I con myself. Basically, I consider a hole lost after bogey. Perhaps that is because the quota games award a point for a bogey and nothing after that. Either way, the difference between a double, a triple, a quad as so on, is basically lost on me.

 

 

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1 hour ago, mcanadiens said:

Sure. At this level bogey is effectively par. So I still have a pretty good shot at it if I'm chipping 3. If we are chipping stroke 4 that's pretty tough. 

Which, gets us at the way I con myself. Basically, I consider a hole lost after bogey. Perhaps that is because the quota games award a point for a bogey and nothing after that. Either way, the difference between a double, a triple, a quad as so on, is basically lost on me.

In that format, you can effectively pick up (or sandbag) when you're at bogey, but you only need to par or bogey a few holes to make your quota. I know you get upset when you hit a bad shot or 2, but you should expect that as a 20. Stop pressuring yourself on the course, and stop giving up. The difference between a double and a quadruple is 2. Multiply that by just 5 bad holes, and you are adding 10 strokes to your score at the end of the day.

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44 minutes ago, CarlSpackler said:

In that format, you can effectively pick up (or sandbag) when you're at bogey, but you only need to par or bogey a few holes to make your quota. I know you get upset when you hit a bad shot or 2, but you should expect that as a 20. Stop pressuring yourself on the course, and stop giving up. The difference between a double and a quadruple is 2. Multiply that by just 5 bad holes, and you are adding 10 strokes to your score at the end of the day.

If anything, wouldn't picking up after bogey be the opposite of sandbagging?  For what its worth, I never pick up until I hit ESC anyway. 

Of course, a stroke is a stroke logically. They all add up at the end of the round, but I have a hard time not looking at a hole like a broken egg after bogey. Nothing to do but scrape it off the floor and throw it in the trash. 

In fairness, 5 quads in one round is a little much even for me, but I'll concede that there's a bunch of waste strokes on those sort of holes.

 

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My name is Brad, and I have spent 30 years conning myself as a golfer. 

When I began playing golf in college, I conned myself into thinking that I was more capable than I really was.  I scoured golf magazines and learned all of the terminology, and read all of the opinions that I could.  I convinced myself that all I needed was to get rid of the old forged blades that I had, and replace them with new, forgiving cavity back irons, and all of my woes would subside.  No sooner had I convinced myself of this fallacy, I did an about face, and convinced myself that I needed the feel of forged, but the forgiveness of cavity backs, and dumped hundreds of dollars into a set of Hogan Edge irons.  I conned myself into thinking that I could diagnose what I was doing wrong and practice my way out of golfing cul-de-sacs for years.  I took a single lesson in 1996, but did not continue with lessons because I conned myself into thinking that I knew it all. 

For years, I had been told that I should play a lot better based on how good my swing looked, and I had let that go to my head.  My rhythm and tempo were good, but a pronounced sway in my swing made solid impact next to impossible, especially given my lack of quality practice.  Speaking of practice, I also conned myself into thinking that all of my ills would be solved through lots and lots of practice.  Of course, all I was doing was ingraining poor mechanics.  For example, I had spent decades fanning my clubface wide open on the backswing, and then struggling to get it back to square at impact.  That “good looking” swing involved a restricted hip and shoulder turn, and the aforementioned sway.  All that led to a flippy, weak, and horribly inconsistent impact position. 

Then, I conned myself into thinking that if I swung the club like Moe Norman, all of my golfing ills would be cured.  I bought a set of Ping irons that were an inch longer than normal and had them re-gripped with oversized grips.  I bought the book by Jack Kuykendall and got the series of DVDs as a Christmas present, and dove into the system.  I conned myself into thinking that this was the magic bullet, given all of my impact issues.  Of course, I failed to take into account the fact that Moe Norman’s swing worked for him because he hit thousands of balls a day, so when I didn’t put in the work, I didn’t improve.

The advent of the internet brought even more information, and more ways to con myself.  Through this website, I discovered the magic bullet of the Stack & Tilt swing, and I threw myself into yet another swing change.  Again, I conned myself into thinking that I could make this swing change on my own.  However, as @iacas  says, “feel ain’t real.”  I thought I was making the proper moves to execute this swing, but like so many times before, I conned myself.  I was not making the changes necessary.  I was putting a spot Band-Aid on a bullet wound and pretending I was moving forward.

Finally, through all of this, I conned myself into thinking that my knowledge of the game and equipment placed me above one of my friends, and frequent playing partners, from an ability perspective.  Again, my swing looked much better, but golf is about results.  My friend contorts himself over the ball into positions that I cannot even imitate, often playing the ball BEHIND his trail foot.  Not surprisingly, he sprays the ball all over the course, and often fails to even make contact on some swings.  However, our scores are often not that different.  That got pointed out the last time that we played, and at that point the con was up. 

This revelation made me take a long, hard look at my game.  I signed up for a series of six lessons, of which I have taken three, and I am hoping that the place doesn’t fold.  I started reading what @iacas and @mvmac (and others) wrote, rather than just looking at equipment and courses.  I built a frame for my net and started putting in meaningful practice based on these teachings.  I am implementing drills with fidelity to make the improvements that I desire in my game.  Sometimes, I con myself that I am practicing the way I need to be practicing, but now I can recognize when I’m doing it, and make the necessary change.

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Brad... nice novella, well written, wonderfully and succinctly expressed.  You are "Every Golfer".  We are always looking for the next best thing.  That is why that one shot toward the end of the round always brings us back... that and a little "stack and tilt" and the golf world is ours!  Until we go out again.  You've got to play for the goodness of the day, the camaraderie of friends and the cocktail, beer or Dr. Pepper afterwards.

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1 hour ago, bwdial said:

My name is Brad, and I have spent 30 years conning myself as a golfer.

Hello Brad. 

You’re in good company. 

1 hour ago, mcanadiens said:

but I have a hard time not looking at a hole like a broken egg after bogey. Nothing to do but scrape it off the floor and throw it in the trash. 

The egg may be cracked with goo leaking out, but you can try to keep it from busting open and spilling onto the floor. 😉

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1 minute ago, CarlSpackler said:

The egg may be cracked with goo leaking out, but you can try to keep it from busting open and spilling onto the floor. 😉

Good analogy.  And hey, like making lemonade when handed lemons, turn that broken egg into an omelet.

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4 minutes ago, CarlSpackler said:

The egg may be cracked with goo leaking out, but you can try to keep it from busting open and spilling onto the floor. 😉

I'll meet you half way. The SOB is already all over the floor.

Let's say that I could possibly not then proceed to step on the broken egg and get it all over the bottom of my shoe. Thus, I avoid tracking the egg all over the living room carpet. 🙂

3 minutes ago, Double Mocha Man said:

Good analogy.  And hey, like making lemonade when handed lemons, turn that broken egg into an omelet.

The omelet is, to use another breakfast staple, toast.

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True to my word, I watched the TourStriker PlaneMate video, and then went out with my TourStriker club and focused on my pivot into a finish position.  It was basically Day 5 of the COVID-19 Challenge, and I could really feel the quality of impact improve.  I started out with quarter swings, and worked my way up to almost full swings.  if I mishit a shot, I went back to quarter swings and began working my way back up.  It was a really solid practice session.

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I think I started conning myself less once I stopped marrying myself to a score and paying more attention to how many strokes with quality contact and good ball flight. 

11 hours ago, mcanadiens said:

Which, gets us at the way I con myself. Basically, I consider a hole lost after bogey. Perhaps that is because the quota games award a point for a bogey and nothing after that. Either way, the difference between a double, a triple, a quad as so on, is basically lost on me.

See I think that type of self deprecating mind f#$k is no good. It's reverse con. Still a con. If you are taking the trouble to spend few hours on a a course, you can't abandon yourself and dive head first into misery like that. 

Man up and find a good instructor. Put your tail between your legs, eat humble pie and do what he tells you for two straight years. You will not only be a better golfer you will be a different person. Not because I think you need to be a different person but single minded pursuit of better contact will make you one. Chances are you will enjoy your time on the course more. 

Edited by GolfLug
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13 hours ago, JGus said:

I know where this is heading...

I don't, and I'm not going to assume. At various points in the last couple of years, both short game and putting were glaring weaknesses in my game.

 

11 hours ago, mcanadiens said:

Basically, I consider a hole lost after bogey. Perhaps that is because the quota games award a point for a bogey and nothing after that. Either way, the difference between a double, a triple, a quad as so on, is basically lost on me.

I'm going to be the guy to ask the tough question here: what are you doing about it? What's your plan to make sure you make more bogeys and pars and eliminate the big numbers?

If you're not hitting many GIR, bogey is really the best score you can realistically make unless you're really good at trouble shots and short game. Considering a hole lost when you're laying +1 is basically like me considering a hole lost when I'm laying at par for the hole. I'm not a par golfer and I don't expect to make par regularly. You're setting yourself up for failure and disappointment if your goal - your desire - is not reasonably attainable.

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23 hours ago, Vinsk said:

How did you realize this? Are you using a shot tracker program? 

Yeah I used the grint app for a few rounds, and my putts were fairly high. I never really hit greens in regulation, so to have chips and pitches to the green and still 2 or 3 putt added up more than I thought. I dont know about everyone, but the snap hook drive OB, or the sliced irons into the woods stand out in the post match mind more than the chip you left to 12 feet. 

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3 minutes ago, DuckDuckFoose said:

Yeah I used the grint app for a few rounds, and my putts were fairly high. I never really hit greens in regulation, so to have chips and pitches to the green and still 2 or 3 putt added up more than I thought. I dont know about everyone, but the snap hook drive OB, or the sliced irons into the woods stand out in the post match mind more than the chip you left to 12 feet. 

  1. If you never really hit greens in regulation… that's a long game (full swing) issue.
  2. The shot OB or the sliced shot into the woods costs you more strokes than the chip you hit to 12 feet. Much more.

So, again, what evidence do you have to support what you had said?

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4 minutes ago, iacas said:
  1. If you never really hit greens in regulation… that's a long game (full swing) issue.
  2. The shot OB or the sliced shot into the woods costs you more strokes than the chip you hit to 12 feet. Much more.

So maybe I wasnt conning myself. I just figured with the amount of work I was putting into my long game and not seeing scores go down, that focusing on the short game would help more. I mean I suppose at my handicap/skill level I could pick any one aspect of the game and work on it in reality. My avg number of putts was between 36-40 adding chips and pitches, seemed to add alot of strokes. 

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2 minutes ago, DuckDuckFoose said:

So maybe I wasnt conning myself. I just figured with the amount of work I was putting into my long game and not seeing scores go down, that focusing on the short game would help more. I mean I suppose at my handicap/skill level I could pick any one aspect of the game and work on it in reality. 

Short game will help, and often much faster, but also… with much less room. You can pretty quickly save a few shots by improving your putting and the short game, but the bigger gains all come from the full swing.

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1 minute ago, iacas said:

Short game will help, and often much faster, but also… with much less room. You can pretty quickly save a few shots by improving your putting and the short game, but the bigger gains all come from the full swing.

Then maybe I'll refocus, use the forum, and other tools to hopefully figure out somewhat how to get to greens more efficiently. 

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