There is the ancient tale of a hunter out with his tribe. An enemy tribe spots the hunter and his fellow hunters and zing he gets dinged by an enemy arrow. The injured hunter is in pain and he is trying to deal with that pain. But his mind wanders and he begins to chastise himself for wearing a bright and very visible headdress, for so carelessly being in open sight, for venturing out in the daylight making him an easier target and for being with a bunch of inexperienced hunters that he had to keep an eye on rather than scanning the vista for danger. So he is heaping more mental pain and anger onto his physical pain. Where does that take him? Deeper into misery and suffering.
Think of that story when your ball soars over the green onto a steep hill 20 feet from the green which slopes downward from your ball’s position. You have enough to face with a treacherous chip shot but you berate yourself for using the wrong club, for hitting the ball too far or for not using your usual brand of golf ball. You are thinking all these negative thoughts when your issue at hand is striking a delicate chip shot. You are flustered and your chip is too low and fast and rolls right off the green for a difficult uphill chip so you berate yourself again and so forth. And the negative energy builds and you add onto your distress by thinking that 9 you just scored has ruined your golf game so you start thinking about the back nine instead of your next shot off the tee.
Where did your behaviour and thought process leave you? You are an unhappy and possibly angry golfer because you added a series of negative thoughts when you should have accepted your errant shot and concentrated on “redeeming” yourself with your next shot. Misery compounding misery is not what the happy golfer needs. On to the next hole. That 9 sucks but there is no sense in letting that haunt you and ruining your day. The last thing you need is golfer’s post traumatic stress disorder.