Questions, Pictures, and the Shot-Deciding Process

Questions, Pictures, and the Shot-Deciding Process

By, Brad Pluth

Five main points 

  1. Questions-staircase

  2. Pictures

  3. What great golfers think about before a shot

  4. during a shot

  5. After a shot. 

  6. Inbetween shots 


One of my favorite couples in the world is Ken and Margie Blanchard. They are Great question askers and love to have fun just being with people. 

They both have the unique ability to cut through all the chaff and get to the root of the issue. We are both great question askers. They both think big yet can lay out the action steps need to grow relationships with family, friends and business associates. 


“Your brain works questions and images. Life is a question. The quality of your answers is directly determined by the quality of your questions. Restaurant question, answer. That’s the right question, if the right answer. Ask the most powerful question possible, and the answer could be like.” Gary Keller from the book “The One Thing” 


Voltaire once wrote, “Judge a man by his questions rather than his answers.” 


Gandhi, "The power to question is the basis of all human progress. The power to question is the basis of all human progress. Great questions clear a path to answers, awareness, and greatness. Every discovery an inventor made began with the transformational questions."


My favorite question is, how do I improve at golf and enjoy the process?

We must envision our own journeys, make our own way, and create her own blueprints for success. To get the results we seek, we have to create and asked the right questions. So how do you do this?


Focusing questions

What’s the one thing I can do such that by doing it everything else will be easier or unnecessary?

You have to understand that questions are more important than the answers. 


Questions from High handicappers:

Why does this happen to me?

Why do I keep doing this/that?

Why do I suck so bad?

Why is this so hard?


Better questions are:

What must I do right now? 

Where is the bull’s-eye? 

What solution do I need? 

Was it good? 

Was it great? 

Does it need work?


Instead of sulking over about shop, simply ask yourself, what solution do I need? This will put you in control of your thoughts and emotions. Asking why questions gives you the freedom to go down the spiral staircase.


View questions as two alternative pathways. A positive or leading question will lead you up the staircase and closer to your goals. Negative questions will slide you down the staircase and away from your goals.

Actions you can do beats intentions every time! You need to take action on your questions.

Shaping your way to better golf through the scoring mindset. 

In teaching golf, I constantly hear golfers want to hit the ball farther, play with more confidence. Let’s define confidence.


Confidence is your ability to hit your desired shot. If you can’t see it, you probably can’t get it. If you have doubts, you’re right. If you think you can, or you think you can’t, you’re right! 


Focus: concert definition. Your ability to keep the main thing, the main thing is required in golf and life. You can only have one conscious thought, you better pick the right one at the right time. We all have freedom of thought, whether we act on it or not is a different story, it is my goal to give you a clear path to improving your thinking and visual skills which will translate into lower scores.

Great golfers have a process they follow the street quality shots when they matter most. This chapter explores great golfers think about before, during and after a shot. Also, look at the use of questions to focus your attention. And provide you a visualization framework that you can use to customize your own scoring mindset.


It’s important to understand how people learn in the choir school. Does it start with the picture? Start with the question? Does it start with a B motion?


Well, your brain works on chemistry, and is influenced by pictures and questions. If you have vivid, color-rich pictures of the journey you are about to take you already half there.


Questions narrow your focus. Some questions are better than others. Make sure you ask great questions to ask before a shot. Lots of room for doubt outside influences affecting your performance. I believe it is very true that a picture is worth 1000 words. And a clear picture will remove a lot of the questions.




What do champions think about before, during and after the shot?


It all starts at home. Although this may look like a home base from baseball, the six checklist items will help you feel prepared before every shot.


The first phase of getting into your scoring mindset and balls assessing the situation. Different assessment is required off the tee, approach shot, and Putt.


  1. Here are five things you need to know before selecting a club. What are the conditions? Wind, heat, rain, etc. 

  2. How is the line? 

  3. Where is the best target? Remember the flag is not always your target.

  4. What is the distance to the flag?

  5. What is the playing distance taking into consideration the conditions, slope and the side of the target to hit it to?

  6. What club do you need to hit the shot?

This completes the assessment phase, Now we are ready to move into the performance phase.


The performance phase

During the shot includes the 10 to 15 seconds prior to strike in the shop with the goal of becoming more and more committed to the target.


The first step in the performance phase just visualize the ideal shot and its target, trajectory, and shape.


With those vivid a picture as possible, see yourself making the necessary swing to produce the ball flight.


A deep calming breaths in and the trigger will signal it’s performance time. I’ve seen players snatch their glove, tap their club, adjust their sleeve, adjuster hat, stop their foot or a physical trigger to engage their performance.


After the trigger, your eye should be fixed on your target as we begin to walk into the shot from behind the ball. Blade the ball. Ice to target. While your eyes are still on the targets at your feet. I was back to the ball. Identify your strike Point on the golf ball. 


Shawn Humphries and reduce me to Lanny Bassham‘s work in his book with Wenning and Mai and. Mr. Bassham describes the performance phase of world-class performers as being spotless. They simply trusted their program to produce the results they had pre-programmed before performance or in the assessment phase. That’s right, great golfers do not think about anything while they swing! Let me say that again. Great golfers do not think about anything while they swing. All of their thinking happened before and they played and trusting mentality. If they did have a thought it was something like oceans or jellybeans... they did not use a conscious cue to trigger their performance.


Post-performance review

This post shot routine will help you avoid frustration play with confidence moving from one shot to the next. Remember the most important shot you’ll ever hit… Is the next one!


In any process, there needs to be a feedback loop and this is why champions are champions rarely make the same mistakes.


There are three questions you need to ask, sometimes fourth.

  1. Was it good?

  2. Was it great?

  3. Does it need work?

If the shot needs work, asked the following:

  1. what solution do I need?

Good shots are those that are close to picture perfect and end in the expected bowl for your performance level.

Great shots are those picture perfect shots, executed as planned. 

Needs work, those shots that were not very good.

What solution do I need, puts you in control of how you respond rather than react into outside influences or even your own personal expectations. I truly believe we are all solution creatures looking for the best way to journey through this world. I’m very thankful I get to play golf this game. 



Can you make the distance appear closer? For your benefit? Can you change the colors of your reality?

Some days you may want to putt with a lime green line along the green, some days pick a spot in front of your ball.


And can you change the color of the stick to your favorite color? Can you change the color of the flag to your favorite color? Can you see the line on the putting green? Can you see the ball traveling in real time from Putt, to Chip, to approach shots, to off the tee. Visualizing in real time will play an incredible role in your distance control.


Can you brighten your target? Can you dim the trouble? Bright, fitted, image-rich pictures draws your brain toward what you want to do.


Role of breathing

Readings hope helps you create a proper level of awareness and focus. Here are a few tips to help you read for performance.

There are times that you need to speed up and there are times that you need to slow down. There are also times to maintain a steady tempo.


Nervousness typically stems from shallow breathing from the upper part of your chest along with having unresolved questions for pictures running through your mind.


In order to breathe to relax, try filling up the bottom of your belly first and then open through your upper part of your chest.


If you need a shot of energy, grab a big gasping deep breath just like you got punched in the stomach.


To maintain your flow, or to increase your energy and focus, breath in for a count of 4 to 6, hold for twice as long, breathe all the air out. This is a great way to relax yourself before heading to the first tee.


Insert learning rules

To summarize you need a clear plan of what to think about before assessing your shot. You need a routine that you can trust in any situation. You need great pictures. You need great questions. Need to learn how to relax or energize yourself.

 Know what to think about before during and after shot, let’s dive into Course Management



Golf Achievement Learning Laws

You can only have one conscious thought at a time. Try to operate your game on one operating system as opposed to chasing what the tour players are doing. 

Your brain operates on questions and pictures. The quality of your questions and the quality of your pictures will determine the quality of play. 

The best achievers in all sports, perform in a trusting mentality. 

Review Brain rules: 



Brian Peterson, one of my Economics Professors at Central College told me, "Great achievers have lived before you. You're not the first person to dream big, so you'd be wise to study what others have learned first, then build your actions on the back of their lessons." Never be afraid to find people who have already succeeded and pick their brains and ask them questions. 


Success leaves clues. Study experts. Where do they start reading putts? How do they set-up? Where do their eyes focus? What are their rules of engagement?


Nobody should set higher standards for your performance than you. Here are some stats to know: