My son, inching towards 9 (and might I say, inching slowly since he’s a little vertically challenged), started playing baseball this spring instead of his usual sport—hockey.
First, you know how they say there’s no crying in baseball? Not true. There’s A LOT of crying in baseball.
The other lesson. Baseball is mostly pretty boring to watch. Not as action-packed as hockey. But you already knew that.
The bigger lesson has to do with mediocrity and playing it safe.
What playing it safe in baseball looks like:
- Taking the pitch instead of swinging your heart out at a perfectly good ball
- Letting yourself get beaned in the noggin instead of getting out of the way so you can take a walk
- Staying on base, not leading off, and being afraid to steal a base
When you play it safe in baseball, you score fewer runs, don’t get the satisfaction of hitting the ball, and most importantly… you stagnate.
When you stagnate long enough, your insides start to rot.
And you die.
Cue life lesson.
Of course, you’re not going to actually die while waiting on first for your base coach to tell you it’s safe to steal second.
But what if your base coach tells you to stay, but you think you can make it?
You take a risk.
There’s a kid on our team who loves to steal and run further than anyone else thinks he can, or should.
He takes huge risks.
Mostly, it makes the coaches mad.
Because the coaches didn’t give the player permission to go.
But the player had other ideas. He saw an opportunity. That opportunity is a risk.
Most of the time, the kid makes it on base, scores the run, or whatever reward he set out to get, he gets it. People say he’s lucky.
Is it really just luck?
Or was it about giving mediocrity and playing it safe the finger, taking the risk, and going for it. No looking back. All out. All in. (Base)balls to the wall.
So, will you listen to your coaches? (Maybe you should if we’re talking about business and you have a great coach) Or will you listen to your gut?
Your gut probably wants to screw mediocrity.
Other life lessons I've gleaned from watching sports: