Last week I introduced ritual practice by having you practice standing center. I did this for two reasons. The first, is that if were to establish a ritual, starting by being centered seems the obvious starting position. The second, is for a ritual to work it has to be repeatable.
As Ben described in his piece on Friday, Jordan Spieth did or felt something different on that fifth shot on 12. Energetically, he shifted back into his normal posture and addressed the shot from a more confident position. That feeling obviously stayed with him after that last shot on 12. That shot set up his birdies on the next two holes. It actually enabled him to get back to his pre-shot ritual that had given him the 5 stroke lead.
This is why a pre-shot ritual should always start with centering. Centering is designed to bring you back to that feeling of being open and at ease with what you’re about to do. Mistakes are bound to happen. But by re-centering before the next shot we can keep the mistake from creating a pattern.
Now, I doubt our mistakes on the golf course will ever cost us a couple of million dollars like it did Jordan Spieth at the Masters. But, centering isn’t all about golf. Centering is about life. The ritual of centering is critical to living a balanced life. To keeping us open and in tune with what is happening within and around us.
This week’s practice is going to continue building on last week's. Grab your favorite golf club, one you always hit well, address the ball and center. Now, notice your grip. Is your breath open and your energy able to flow? Take a couple of practice swings as you try to stay centered. I highly recommend hitting a bucket or two this week as you practice centering at address. Limit the practice to just the one club .