Carve it in Stone – Setting Goals with Precision

The season is coming to a close and this is the time to reflect.

Did you accomplish everything you wanted to with your golf game, why or why not?

If you didn’t set out with a goal that you wrote down and had available every time you played or practiced you did yourself a disservice. Setting a goal for your golf game is like providing a road map to playing the best golf of your life.

A SMART goal is the way to write your goals which make them precise, easier to follow and ultimately easier to achieve. SMART is an acronym for:


  • S – Specific
  • M – Measurable
  • A – Achievable
  • R – Relevant
  • T – Time – Focused

Too many times golf goals sound like this…

This year I’m going to get better at golf and I’m going to play a lot more

The goal above has no binding qualities, it’s boring and if something better comes along it’s easy to put golf aside. Answering the four questions below will assist you in writing a goal which will motivate you, get you excited and get your golf game to levels which were once just dreams.

Question 1 – Where are you with your golf game?

This question can be answered with your handicap, your average scores, the amount of golf you play or time you spend practicing. You can also break it down into segments of your game; driving, putting, short game or irons.

The answer…

“I am currently about a 15 handicap. I only play twice maybe three times a month but I try to practice at least once every week. I currently hit a slice with my driver and miss too many fairways but I can score fairly well when I manage to get the ball in play.”

Question 2 – Where do you want your golf game to be?

When you answer this question its best to be honest with yourself and start thinking about your aspirations and realistic expectations. If you work six long days a week, have a couple kids at home and about 4 hours a week to practice and play, you might want to take that into account.

The answer…

“I would like to get my handicap down below 10. I need to start hitting the ball straighter and not sacrifice my short game abilities.”

Question 3 – How are you going to get there?

It’s time to start getting specific and challenge yourself. You can start thinking about lessons, reading books and setting up practice routines based on your available time.

The answer…

“Through the winter I will try to read at least two books pertaining to golf that will help my golf game. I will also seek out some guidance from an instructor who I feel is a good fit for me and will keep me motivated to improve. Through the spring and summer, I will find at least two days a week I can stop by the course on my way home from work and practice chipping and putting for 15-30 minutes.”

Question 4 – When do you want to get there?

This one is easy, set a time table for your improvement.

The answer…

“I would like to accomplish this by the end of July.”

Once you have answered those questions you not only have the backbone for a motivating goal but you have also established a plan on how you will achieve it.

Now Write Your Goal

If after you write your goal you don’t feel motivated to immediately hit balls or find a place to putt your goal might need to be refined. Write a goal that is inspiring, a goal you feel you can achieve and most importantly a goal you want to achieve.

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