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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

How to succeed in life with a two-strike count!

I never really played baseball, but I have have been a lifelong fan and I know the rules of the game.  However, an interesting thing happened one year.  I used to play fantasy baseball and one year, I nearly won the league trophy and money. While I was competing hard for the league trophy, I started to pay closer attention to games.  I noticed something interesting.  Certain players tend to succumb to getting struck out or quick outs when they fall behind on the count.  However, the good hitters have the ability to flip the at-bat around when they fall behind on the count and some seem to even thrive when initially behind on the count.  So, I asked myself why is that?  Here is what I came up with.
  • Those hitters to better able to focus, especially when put in a tough at-bat.  Adversity focuses them rather than rattles them.
  • Those hitters believe in themselves and their abilities, even when the count is not in their favor.
  • Those hitters have learned to fiercely battle rather than giving up or conceding.
  • Those hitters have the patience to realize the key is hanging in long enough for things to turn their way.  That is until the pitcher makes a mistake.  As Carly Simon says in "Coming Around Again"- I know nothin' stays the same, But if you're willin' to play the game, It's comin' around again.  So, just keep in the game long enough and your luck will eventually turn.
I was talking to a friend the other day, and we put it all together.   In this life, some people are born with all the advantages, but don't necessarily succeed.  Like a batter who has a 3-0 count, but fails to get on base or move the runner(s) along.  Yet others are born in a seemingly hopeless environment, yet they succeed in spite of it.  This is like a batter who has an 0-2 count, but somehow find a way to end up on base or advance the runner(s).

A person born with an 0-2 count in life can succeed if they:
  • Like a successful hitter find the ability to focus when the chips are down.
  • Have someone who has believed in them along the way and therefore has shown them that that is safe to belief in him or herself. 
  • Have the "can do" or "never give up" attitude.
  • Realize if they battle long enough, with God's guidance, they will see the life take a turn in their favor.

In short, it is not how you start out that has to be the determinant factor of if you fail or succeed, but how you follow through.  If you are taught and/or learn to view yourself as capable of greatness, you will be more likely to succeed, even when adversity hits.  Inevitably the best students/players a) either start out slow or b) hit the wall at some point or c) both.  It is being able to look beyond the early failures and/or see past the wall that determines whether you'll inevitably be successful.  A good coach or educator will not just be one that is able to relate the X's and O's or the knowledge, but also one who is able to get his or her student/player to see themselves as being capable of learning or incorporating it successfully.

My takeaway:

  • Do not take falling behind (or failures) as being a failure, but instead as an being an unexploited opportunity to be successful.
  • The game isn't over until the last out or the last strike.  So, keep yourself in the game long enough to exploit an opportunity that will inevitably come along.
  • Optimism or successes can be contagious.  So, don't be selfish, take the opportunity to pass it/them on.

 "Give a man a success and he'll have a successful day.  Teach or inspire him to succeed and he'll have a success life."

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