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Playing In The Zone

When you are in the "zone", it is almost magical how easy it is to accomplish even the most difficult shots. However, not many golfers can enter the zone at will or maintain being in the zone once they realize that they are in it.

It is possible to enter and stay in the zone by optimizing your brain's chemistry, which enhances all of your natural abilities and functions. Fortunately, getting and staying in the zone is a lot easier than hitting a golf ball perfectly every time, which is impossible.

To optimize your brain's chemistry all you have to do is to eliminate all of your negative emotions and increase your positive emotions. This is easier said than done because of your mind's past programming of outcome thinking and associating negative emotions to facts.

The first step to playing in the zone is to become totally process oriented. If you focus on the outcome, you open yourself to negative emotions of fear and anger of making or missing a shot. The only value an outcome provides is feedback to help you improve the process. It makes common sense that who ever executes the process the best will be the winner. So why focus on the outcome and rob yourself of the opportunity to play in the zone.

By focusing solely on the process of improving, it is a lot easier to be objective and realize that everything that happens is a fact. A fact is merely a fact. A fact provides information that you can use to improve the process. There is never a justifiable reason to allow a mere fact to cause a negative emotional reaction in your mental makeup.

For example, if your putt lips out, that is a fact. An outcome thinker will more than likely feel upset or disappointed because he missed the putt. However, a process thinker will be happy because it was very close and look for adjustments to sink the next putt. The same fact causes different emotional reactions and brain chemistry depending upon your focus.

If you train your mind to be process oriented, you can start focusing on how you feel and develop the ability to feel your way into the zone and maintain it. The greater your mechanical ability, the better your outcomes will be when you are in the zone.

This is why Tiger Woods has been playing exceptional golf. He has excellent mechanical skills and anticipates being able to play in the zone during a tournament. He is not concerned with the outcome. His primary concern is to enter the zone because he expects the outcome to be there when he does.

© Copyright 2002 by Michael Anthony.  All rights reserved