It goes with the territory: when people feel good about how the state is doing, views about the governor benefit; when they think the state is heading in the wrong direction, the governor’s approval rating suffers.
At the same time, when people like what the governor is doing, they tend to see the direction of the state in a more positive light. Likewise, when they don’t like the governor’s performance, it’s reflected in how they view the direction of the state.
Don’t believe it? Check out this historical chart the Public Policy Institute of California created for Calbuzz based on their surveys of likely voters.