The shank shot can do the most to destroy your golfing confidence than anything else out there. The shot, which comes off the heel or hosel of the club, shoots straight out to the right (for right-handed golfers). But by taking a few extra steps in your approach, you can minimize the amount of times you hit this embarrassing shot.
Understand that the main cause of shanking is usually mental. Instead of simply going through your normal stroke, you want to finesse the ball onto the green or fairway thus tightening up your stroke and your body. So the first step is to clear your mind of the stress of the shot by concentrating on your the mechanics of your swing and visualize what that swing looks and feels like before you approach the ball.
Line up the ball in your stance and place the club head behind the ball. If you are chronically shanking the ball, move your stance back so the ball is even with the toe of the iron. Visualize that spot as where you want to strike the ball.
As you pull the club back, do so in a fluid motion. Again this is where visualizing your shot prior to hitting the ball will come in handy. As you reach the end of your back swing, visualize leaning back on your heels. You can do this by putting a slight amount of pressure on your heels. Do not put too much pressure though as to move your body backward. Anyone watching should not be able to detect this step.
As your bring the club through the swing, lead with your front shoulder, this will keep the club in the correct swing plain. The reason for shanking the ball is because weight is shifted to the toes during the swing. By applying pressure on your heels, you have eliminated this issue and by leading with your shoulder, you keep the club in the swing plain.
As the club moves through, be sure to keep your head, still concentrating on that spot behind the ball where they club head was. Do not raise your head until your back shoulder and arm force it to come forward and finish the shot.