Sharper Focus

PLUNK! “He really was focused on that putt.”

You hear golf commentators say this all the time, but did you ever wonder how you can improve your own focus and concentration? Since it can really help your golf game, here are some ways to improve those skills — off the course.

Next time you are having a conversation in a crowded restaurant or a noisy bar, concentrate only on the other person’s voice. To do this, you have to screen out dozens of other sounds. You’ll find that your attention will probably drift to those distractions and then back to the person you’re with. However, the more you want to listen to your companion (remember your first date?), the more intensely focused you’ll be and the longer you’ll be able to sustain that concentration.

As a drill, shift your attention to hear a different conversation from across the room. We all can do it. If someone over there mentions our name, our attention can snap into that conversation in a nanosecond. This focusing ability is so powerful, it’s been studied and is called “The Cocktail Party Effect.”

Now snap your focus and concentration back to the person next to you.

For a visual drill, try this: in your next one-on-one conversation, see if you can determine whether the other person’s left or right eye is dominant. (It’s the one they’re really focusing on you.) Now look only at that eye. Then┬áshift your attention to their whole face. Now back to that dominant eye. You’re shifting and sharpening your focus.

If you practice this, when you get to the golf course, it will become easier and easier to focus on one grain of sand in the sand trap or one dimple on your golf ball.

Before you know it, you’ll be on autofocus.

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