11. Sing, hum or whistle – access your right brain functions, and distract yourself as well. Better still, sing a song that’s associated with fun, happiness and good times, and associate yourself with some good feelings in this way. The same goes for what you hum or whistle. If you’re thinking good, fun things you cannot be angry at the same time.
12. TFT – Thought Field Therapy – you may have heard of “tapping”. Use the following tapping sequence as detailed in the book by Roger Callaghan “Tapping the Healer Within” and your anger will dissolve:-
1. Intentionally think about the anger you are treating.
2. Tap the little finger, on the inside tip, adjacent to the nail, on the side next to the ring finger – tap 5 times
3. Tap your collarbone, about an inch below where a man knots his tie and an inch to the right – tap 5 times.
4. Tap the back of your hand, about an inch below the raised knuckles of the ring finger and the little finger when making a fist – tap with two fingers of the opposite hand, about 3-5 times per second and keep tapping whilst:-
– open eyes
– close eyes
– open eyes and look down to the left
– look down to the right
– circle eyes round in one direction
– hum a few bars of “happy birthday” out loud
– count aloud from 1 to 5
– hum “happy birthday” again
5. Tap the little finger again in the same spot 5 times
6. Tap the collarbone point 5 times
7. Hold your head level and move your eyes down. Then tap you hand in the same spot as before as you move your eyes upward.
Believe it or not, this has been proven to get rid of anger. You’ll need to read to the book to find out the scientific reasons for why it works.
13. Distract yourself – change your thoughts. Everything in life starts with a thought. You create your own reality by choosing the way in which you think about things. “It” doesn’t make you angry – you make yourself angry. You’re the only person who can change your thoughts; nobody else can do it for you. So distract yourself – think about something else – go to your “happy place”.
14. Take a step back – think before you act. Take a moment to review the situation. Distance yourself, look at it from a different direction, and take a different perspective. Breathe deeply and take time to choose the most productive way of dealing with the situation.
15. Learn to laugh at yourself – it’s a GAME, guys! It’s meant to be fun. Lighten up – nobody cares how your shot came off. In fact, your playing partners would like to have a good laugh. Just bobbing that ball straight down the middle would be b..o..r..i..n..g. Having a good laugh should be a pre-requisite in any round of golf.
16. Get it in perspective – Why act like McEnroe on the tennis court? (“You CANNOT be SERIOUS”) Why did you expect to hit a perfect shot every time? Professionals don’t manage that so amateurs should not expect that either. And anger on the golf course is only caused by expectations that didn’t materialize.
17. Whatever you imagine you create – If you want to do some useful preparation and you haven’t got much time, visualizing perfect shots will help. Your brain doesn’t know the difference between a vividly imagined experience and a real one. Imagine a few perfect shots, build up that muscle memory and then you’re more likely to hit a good shot on the first tee. Standing there thinking “I know I’m going to slice this into those trees” is of course great preparation for exactly that. Give yourself a pat on the back – you did exactly what you planned. So if you want to hit a better shot and thereby not trigger off that “Mr Angry” in you, brush up on your visualization skills.
18. A picture is worth a thousand words – where there is a conflict between your will power and your imagination, your imagination wins. To demonstrate this, try as hard as you can, right now, to NOT think about a giraffe. What are you thinking about? Did you see the word “giraffe” or a picture of its neck? Similarly, what happens when you think “don’t go in the bunker”? Your mind is exquisitely talented – the golf ball will go to whatever place on the course you are picturing…So if you want to stop those angry triggers, picture the place where you want the ball to end up.
19. Selective memory (bin the negatives) – turn a blind eye, put it to the back of your mind, sweep it under the carpet. Familiar with these phrases? They reflect another of the exquisite mental talents we all instinctively possess. The problem is that some people turn a blind eye to the good things and focus on the bad ones. Try it the other way round and there will be nothing to make you angry.
20. Talk to yourself nicely – we all feel better with a bit of praise. Most of you will be good at encouraging someone else who’s hit a duff shot…yet when it’s your own duff shot that’s in the spotlight, you’ll call yourself a plonker! If someone else called you that you’d get pretty angry; and calling yourself names will make you angry too. So, give it a go, try being nice to yourself, stop calling yourself names, talk to yourself in a nice soothing voice. Who knows, saying to yourself “Never mind, the next one will be great” could actually work.
Roseanna Leaton, specialist in golf hypnosis cds and hypnosis mp3 downloads.