Baseball Is What It Was

The three greatest days of the year (and there should be no argument) are my birthday, Christmas Day and the day that baseball season is over. My wife, however, loves baseball. She rarely misses a Texas Ranger game on TV or on the radio. She knows all the players; who’s on the DL, who’s in a slump, who’s on first and so on. She also believes that baseball is the greatest sport “to have on while you’re doing something else.”

Another good thing about baseball is that it offers great metaphor opportunities for someone who does transitional coaching for a living.

Last year I was working with a financial executive who was used to being a ‘buyer’ in the market and, due to a recent acquisition, was now a ‘seller’. He was struggling with the job search ‘sales’ process. He didn’t like to lose, and he was getting pretty beat up, to the point that he forgot what success felt like.
Have I mentioned that he was a huge baseball fan? He loved the Rangers. He had season tickets. He had a ton of Ranger stuff. (I was seriously thinking of introducing him to my wife.)

Baseball season is 162 games long. Each team figures that, statistically, given the law of averages, they will win at least 54 games and hopefully lose no more than 54 games. The difference in making the playoffs or not depends on how they perform in the other 54 games.

In life, we are going to lose. It’s just the way it is. And sometimes we are going to fall into the win column with little effort on our part. Having the knowledge and confidence to handle the rest is what makes the difference.

It took awhile, but he got it. He worked hard. He stretched his comfort zone. He worked harder. He stopped worrying about what he couldn’t control. He built his network. The baseball metaphor just helped him understand the difference between a setback and a defeat.

I’m beginning to like baseball but not more than my birthday.