Golf might fly under the radar of many sports enthusiasts, but it has a great deal of devoted followers. While often viewed as confusing or even boring, once you give it a try, you’re likely to be hooked, and no matter rain or shine, always be prepared for the best rain gear for golf.

Golf is a great way to spend your leisure time, but to really enjoy yourself you should brush up on your skills and show off a bit. The beauty of golf is that it is simple – and once you understand its psychology, you will be unstoppable on the field.

Here are some tips to help you take home a golf trophy:

  1. Stop making scoring your focus

There is no denying the fact that a sport is even better when you score. The adrenaline rush, excitement and pride that comes with attaining a great score can put you on top of the world for the rest of the day. But if you want to get the trophy, you should not be thinking about scoring while swinging the club.

If you do some digging, you’ll learn that when renowned players are doing what they do best, they aren’t focusing on scoring. You can’t play good golf game when you’re distracted; on top of that, if you think too much about scoring, you will develop anxiety, which can affect your concentration.

So while you’re playing, pay attention to the task at hand instead of the outcome. Focus only on your shots and you will end up scoring effortlessly!

  1. Control your emotions

Powerful emotions are the number one enemy of a good golf game. If you look around, you will discover that seasoned golf players keep their feelings in check – especially frustration. Yes, even professional golfers mess up in the field, but how often do you see them acting out? Not often at all. Why is that? They control their emotions.

The key is to keep your head clear so you can focus on the game. Reacting to poor shots or excellent ones will distract you, making you less capable of playing well at the next hole. Any kind of emotional reaction will end up distracting you, and because you can’t predict what result each shot will bring, the most you can do is to know how to manage your frustration.

If you’re not impressed by a poor shot you make – or if you’re very excited by a good one – take a few deep breaths before moving on to the next one. If you can stay calm when things are going well and when they’re going poorly, you’ll play all the better.

  1. Be mentally tough

Even if you’ve never had any training as a golfer, you can work on your mental toughness. This will do you a lot of good in the field. Gold is a mental game; playing by its rules will put you in a better position as a golfer.

Mental toughness is all about controlling your thinking. By thinking only about the game and your next shot, you’ll develop more confidence in yourself. As you develop mental toughness, you’ll trust yourself to make the right decisions in the field.

Here’s a nice bonus: Achieving mental control makes it easier to achieve emotional stability.

  1. Hang out with players who are more skilled than you

There is always someone out there who can do something better than you, or who has more experience. Don’t look at them as competition – they’re an opportunity for you to learn! Go to the course and watch other golfers play. If you find a group, ask if they’ll let you join. Golfers tend to be a friendly bunch, and the groups you find will likely be open to an additional member.

Paying attention to how they play will be a valuable learning experience. Even if you chit-chat between holes and aren’t hyper-focused on learning, you’ll still pick up tips just by spending time in their company.

If you’d like to focus on learning and improve quickly, though, you can hire a coach. This individual is committed to helping you become a good golfer. On top of teaching you new tricks, they can help you identify the areas you need to improve.

  1. Self-pity isn’t allowed

Your golf game will never improve if you drown yourself in self-pitying and negative thoughts. A positive attitude goes a long way in golf, so encourage yourself instead of putting yourself down.  Negative thoughts do nothing but cloud your mind. If you indulge in them, you’ll constantly doubt your skills; if you can’t trust yourself while playing, you’ll never be able to play well.

Start a new habit. Before every game, allow yourself to think only positive thoughts. Give yourself a pep talk before heading out. Over time, this will boost your confidence and help you play better.

  1. Practice

All the encouragement and positive talk in the world won’t help you if you aren’t playing! The more you take to the course and play, the better you’ll get. You’ll steadily work on your weaknesses and further hone your strengths. You’ve no doubt heard the old adage, “Practice makes perfect.” It’s true: Play more and practice more, and you’ll continuously improve – and you’ll have even more fun playing the game.

Becoming a better golf player doesn’t happen overnight, but you can improve over time. Learn to control your mind and emotions, and work hard at avoiding mental distractions and improving your concentration. The more you play, the better you’ll get. Follow the tips above and you just might become a seasoned golfer – even one that is celebrated by the over 20 million golf enthusiasts in the world.

We’ll see you on the course!