My Heart Has A Mind of Its Own

When Todd posted about playing golf from your heart on Valentine’s Day, it triggered a waterfall of heart related recollections  for me, too–all of which support the wisdom that Moe shared with Todd.

Moe’s cryptic note telling his protege “you have to play golf from the heart” is supported in so many ways by science, other golfing superstars and coaches.

Begin with a recent science supported discovery that there is an actual brain in the heart that works in a two-way communication system.    I learned that from the researchers at HeartMath a great organization I was introduced to by Todd’s good friend and colleague Dr. Ron Cruikshank.  HeartMath recruited me to work with them on the development of a program to manage emotions for golfers.

My work on their , Managing Emotions:  Golf’s Next Frontier led me to this myth shattering piece of supporting research that changed my perspective forever:  the heart-brain’s neural circuitry enables it to act independently of the cranial brain to learn, remember, make decisions and even feel and sense.

Eureka!   Connie Francis was right when she sang, My Heart Has A Mind of Its Own.

You know who else was right about the heart being the seat of emotions and the key to winning golf?  These guys.

Arnold Palmer:  “What separates great players from the good ones is not so much ability as brainpower and emotional equilibrium.”

Jack Nicklaus: “Golf is a game of emotions and adjustments.” 

Tiger Woods:  “I think the guys who really control their emotions are going to win.”

It’s been clear to me for a long time that my heart is more than a blood pump.  It’s my 15th club and my best one.   Not only has golfing from my heart led to the best golf years of my life, it rescued me from the dreaded YIPS affliction.

The aforementioned HeartMath research and emotion management techniques smoothed out my putting stroke and other life-important activity, too.

So, let’s talk about YIPS and the heart.   YIPS are all about emotions.  The term is popularized in golf.  It’s most common form occurs in putting and is an uncontrollable hand twitch during the putting stroke.  What most YIPPERS forget to describe this the moment of absolute panic which precedes the twitch.  It is an excruciating nano-instant of virtual blackout.

Writers YIP and call it a cramp.  First time kissers YIP and smooch a nose.  Actors YIP and blow a line.  Moguls YIP and blow a deal.

The science calls YIPPING cortical inhibition, a term which describes what occurs when emotions such as fear, anxiety or frustrations dominate.  It’s first measurable symptom is impaired thinking.  Its second measurable symptom is loss of co-ordination.   Those two symptoms are classic YIPS.  An appreciating heart is the cure.

So, if your golf heart holds positive feelings and you can appreciate what Moe gave to Todd to give to us perhaps you’d like to show it by helping us pay it back to Moe’s legacy by contributing to the already-in-production The Feeling of Greatness documentary.  When you click the link and donate $50 or more, Todd will send you his Golf From Your Heart Video.  








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