025 - Lesson from Australian Junior Baseball Nationals...

It's a place I never thought I'd set foot again after my time there back in 2006 in Mt Gambier, South Australia - Australian Junior Baseball Nationals

My personal time and experience was filled with far too much self-placed pressure and negative thoughts - but also one of my greatest learning experiences in hindsight. And setting foot back there this weekend to watch Hayden & Kai represent NSW Country in U/18's and U/16's brought these lessons flooding back in droves

Yet there was one lesson that jumped out at me on more than five occasions - it ties into control and what you need to focus on - and it came on every single occasion from either a starting or relief pitcher...

In every single sport, there's only one thing that you should be focusing on - doing your job - whatever that is. In terms of a pitcher, it's throwing strikes, and getting the ball in play to make outs - what happens once the ball leaves your hand isn't up to you (unless the ball is hit back to you)... it's then in the hands of your teammates behind you

Yes, if they make an error it sucks and you feel angry & upset - but you can't control them. You shake it off, regroup, get back on the mound & go back to work throwing strikes and getting the ball in play to make outs - as that's your job

Getting upset or frustrated solves nothing - as you cannot control what's happening behind you no matter how hard you try. And trust me, your teammates will be upset with themselves enough and the coaches will be watching this, and they want the players who can stay mentally stable & strong

How do you handle these sorts of situations in your sport & life? Do you stay strong, or do you crumble?

Actionable Tips + Questions:

  • What's your job in your team/for your position? What are the 1-3 reasons you're in the team/your position needs to focus on during a game? How can you do these to the best of your ability?
  • Do you ever let your head drop/get angry and frustrated with teammates when they make mistakes? If so, why & how do you act out? What effect does this have on your teammates and how do you think your coaches view this?
Nick Maier