Most people don’t realize how important the mental game is in golf. I believe it might be the most important part of the game. The brain controls all your muscles, so if your brain is telling you muscles to do something that is wrong than you will probably end up with bad results. Whereas if you are completely focused on the target, you will hit a much better shot.
You can focus on certain things when your on the course and off the course. Most people think about the wrong things when they are on the course. When playing, you want to think about the target and not too much on how you are going to swing the club. Whereas, if you are focused only on the way you swing the club, your mechanics might improve slightly but your scores won’t improve at all, because when you are thinking about body movements you don’t think about where the fairway or pin is. When you are on the range you need the think internally.
The time to think internally is in practice. Although, if you want to get better you also need to focus externally. Here is an example of a practice plan that I would follow.
20 minutes: Focus on hip back and not early extending. Do some drill to help.
Do some more drills to help with the plane
30 minutes: Focus on the target and try to shape shots toward a pin.
15 minutes: Play a game, play a course that I know in my head. Hit each club that I would hit on the course. If it is a par 4 hit driver, if a par 3 then hit the appropriate iron. If I produce a shot that is good. Such as in a set area with driver(hit the fairway). Or on the green with an iron than I would give myself a point. A perfect score is 36. I would always try to beat my previous best score.
As you can see the last 45 minutes of my practice routine I would not be thinking about technique at all. I would be completely involved in producing a certain shot. This is the training of the mental game to not always think about technique but to also think about the shot and the outcome.