I've been thinking a lot about baseball...
You see, I love baseball.
Monday was opening day for The Detroit Tigers. In Detroit, opening day is widely looked at as an unofficial holiday. It's like no other sporting day in the city. It ushers in new seasons and a new sense of optimism about the months to come.
Baseball holds a special kind of magic to me, that other sports do not. I know that when I was growing up I played baseball. Part of it was organized sport, but part of it was just in my neighborhood with other kids my age. As I got older, I stopped playing, but started watching and listening more often. I'm still paying attention, but lately, it's got me to thinking...
The magical part of baseball is that unlike other sports, the defense has posession of the ball. It's a team sport, but in that moment when a batter goes up to the plate, he is on his own. All the practices, the training, the studying... all of it... It all comes down to singular moments when that individual takes the spotlight and has to take action. It's a slower game, with time to take a chance, to swing and miss, to try again, to change your approach and to try yet again.
What is interesting about this, is that like in life, we so often are on our own. For a creative individual, it's my work, it's my vision and my voice that I need to share. I'm the batter, taking to the plate versus a world where the noise of a million photographers fills the air. I've put in the long hours to learn how to create the work I want to do. Yet here I am, once a week, taking my at bat, putting my voice out there. Creating content that hopefully will benefit someone else and maybe even help me figure out the journey I'm on...
If nothing else, I would encourage you to try whatever it is you are called to do.
We all swing and miss. But at the end of the day, we pick ourselves up, we redefine our purpose, dust ourselves off and get back into the batters' box to have another go at it. Will we strike out sometimes? Of course! Will we knock it out of the park at others? Indeed! The ability to keep trying is key.
This past week I had a fellow artist ask me how I stayed motivated. I must admit, I'm not always. I have bad days just like anyone else. When I stopped and thought about it I realized that the best strategy for me is to surround myself with good people. People that care about me. People with whom I can share my struggles. People that care to listen and encourage me to keep going. These are sometimes other artists, but often not. They are the others on my team. The ones that keep rooting for me even after a strikeout.
The techniques and procedures are in my mind.
The feelings and stories I want to share are in my heart.
The motivation is in my soul.
So find your team. Thank them. Let them know that as a creative person their support and care makes a difference in your life. So that the next time you swing and miss, stepping back up to the plate is not that hard. You have a team rooting you on, believing in you.
Have a wonderful week!