Ben Hogan once stated, “golf is not a game of good shots, it’s a game of bad shots.”

If you really want to play consistent golf, manage your game by managing your mistakes. After each round, you should look at your statistics a bit deeper than your typical fairways or greens hit, but not as deep as strokes gained putting, that gets too be too much in my opinion. But hey, if that type of over-analyzing works for you, go at it.

2012 US Open champion, Webb Simpson, and his caddy, Paul Tesori, have a specific system that examine their own play. It’s quite simple; they look at four statistics that show where they are making mistakes….They know that the person who makes the fewest mistakes usually wins.

After every tournament, they look at the following four statistics:

1)   Three-putts

2)   Bogeying any par-five

3)   Bogey from the fairway <8 iron

4)   Double bogey

They have deemed that any of these mistakes is like giving 2 shots back to the field that they cannot afford to make. Assessing their play in this fashion also helps direct their practice, and/or game strategy.

If the goal is consistency, are you managing mistakes in your own game?

Dr. Rob Bell is the author of Mental Toughness Training for Golf, an AASP certified Sport Psychology consultant, and caddy on tour. He consults with athletes, coaches, and teams at all levels helping build and enhance their own mental toughness.  His website is and you can find him on Twitter @drrobbell,

In early 2000’s, Ken Ravizza was doing one of his impromptus, yet standing room only, presentations at the national conference of the Association of Applied Sport Psychology. He was working with the Anaheim Angels at the time and one of his messages was “don’t ask for gear.”

In essence, if the team and coaches enjoy your work, they will freely offer you team gear and swag. I LOVED IT! I have lived by this mantra, although I thoroughly enjoy fresh warm-ups, lids, and jackets. I have a passion for supporting and helping the various teams I work.

Here’s the deal, if you want to know your effectiveness, let the coach get your size and outfit you. I have come to associate that a coach that freely gives you “gear” means he/she wants you to be present and a part of the team. It is a small, yet important, token of appreciation and a rite of passage.

You’re receiving monetary compensation as well (you should be if you’re not), so it doesn’t necessarily mean a coach that doesn’t “outfit” you appreciate you, but it does go a long way.

What are small ways that you feel a part of the organization or team that you work with?

Have you ever played the game— I love you more? Choose from the following three choices, which relationship most describes you.

1) Your partner loves you more than you love him or her.


2) You love your partner more then he/she loves you.


3) You love each other equally, but it’s boring.

Now, if you did not pick an answer that says something as well. But, the question, if answered honestly, tells us more about our sense of control, more so than our actual relationship status.

If we pick answer #1, we want to be loved MORE than our loving the other person. It means we value control. The person we are closest too physically, emotionally, and spiritually, we still want just the slightest bit of control.

If we picked answer #2, we sacrifice control over the relationship, knowing what ultimate love really feels like. It involves complete trust, because we believe that our emotional needs will still be met, and it means we are willing to be vulnerable. We are completely exposed, and if your heart has ever been broken and you can honestly pick #2, you’re stronger than you think.

If answer #3 was your choice, you either weren’t honest or you are really boring. Maybe that’s a good thing. It means you avoid all or nothing thinking! The older I’ve gotten, the more I actually take this choice.

We confuse and spend too much time on the things we can influence, rather then focusing only on the things within our control. The only things inside of our complete control are our attitude, preparation, and our hustle. We control the door, not The Hinge.

Dr. Rob Bell is a Sport Psychology Coach. His company DRB & associates is based in Indianapolis.  Some clients have included: University of Notre Dame, Marriott, and Walgreens. Check out the most recent book on Mental Toughness- Don’t Should on Your Kids: Build Their Mental Toughness