Although you can theoretically play golf solo, nobody does it. Why? Because golf is fundamentally a social sport. You wander from hole to hole, enjoying the weather and the beautiful surroundings while networking with your friends.
But how do you become one of those people that everyone wants to have a round of golf with on a Sunday morning? Let’s take a look.
Brush Up On Your Etiquette
Unless you’re a pro golfer, golf isn’t about the game itself: it’s about the experience of being outdoors in beautiful weather practising your technique and, frankly, chatting to the people you’re playing alongside. Many new players, however, seem to think that the aim of the game is to play a round in as few shots as possible, beating themselves up when they don’t quite hit the mark. This isn't what golf is about at all. Throwing clubs and getting in a rage when the ball doesn’t go where you want it to go makes it unpleasant to be around you. You don’t want that.
The best way to view golf is to see it as a vehicle to get the things that you want, like deeper relationships with people, business connections, and exercise. It’s not about winning - at least most of the time.
Don’t Talk The Whole Way Round
Although you may view the purpose of a round of golf to chat with the people you’re with, they may not see it that way. Some people can’t help but play to win: their competitive nature compels them. If you want to be the guy everyone wants to play a round of golf with, then it pays to pander to this competitive spirit. Let them have their space, encourage them when they’re winning, and give them what they want emotionally: affirmation.
Not all golfers are created equal: some, like you perhaps, have a lot of skill, while the people you’re playing with may not. It’s a good idea, therefore, to play with a handicap - extra points on your board to even the odds for your compatriots. That doesn’t stop you from looking for the most forgiving irons for high handicappers, but it does help others feel as if they’ve got a shot at winning.
Although your companions may admire your technique, it's unlikely that they’ll want to sit through endless pre-shot routines. There’s no need to limber up before teeing off. Focus on getting your tee shots off quickly and make room for everyone else. Remember, you want to ingratiate yourself with people so that they tell everyone that you’re the guy they should go to if they want a great game of golf.
Be The Fun Guy
Nobody likes the guy who’s super serious about everything, spending thousands of dollars on gear and getting in a rage everytime he makes a shot that goes slightly awry. People want to be around others who are fun. It’s not a pleasant experience just waiting for a person to blow up in a rage because they missed a shot or their technique is off.