Even the best players in the world don't have their game exactly where they want it all the time. But they find a way of getting the ball in the hole

As Justin Rose prepared for his first competitive action of 2020, the Englishman gave some insight into a dip in form he suffered last year.

“I got into bad habits last year and swung the club poorly,” he explained. “I took a month off after [the 2019 Farmers Insurance Open] and that was essentially my off-season. The decision behind that was to be fresh for the majors. It just didn’t work out very well.”

But it was what Rose said next which really piqued my interest.

“I think it was a brilliant year the way I look back at it. My statistics ball-striking-wise dropped off, but I putted and competed well.

“I felt like I had a chance to win the US Open and was in the second-to-last group in the Open Championship. Without having much game, I really felt like I competed well.”

So what can we learn from that?

I don’t need to tell you that the game of a struggling Justin Rose is still beyond most people’s wildest dreams, but being able to compete at whatever level you’re playing at certainly isn’t.

If the only success you achieve, relatively speaking, comes when your swing feels good, you’re not going to get much joy out of golf. In my opinion, it’s essential to take satisfaction from scrambling when things aren’t going to plan. After all, there are no pictures on the scorecard.

In my 20-plus years of playing golf, I can count on one hand the number of times my game has felt truly ‘on’.

Technical work is, and will always be, important, but as we approach the new season don’t fall into the trap of searching for swing perfection because it doesn’t work.

Let’s make 2020 your best year for the right reasons. Find a balance with your practice and don’t neglect what really matters, scoring.

What part of your game are you working hard at for the new season? Let me know in the comments or send me a tweet