What Baseball and Your Health Goals Have in Common

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My Facebook feed this week was blowing up. I didn’t know I had so many Facebook friends who were Cubs fans. I even read that one fan at the game held a sign that said, “Now I can die in peace.” That’s what you call a diehard fan!

In case you missed it and have no idea what I’m talking about, the Chicago Cubs defeated the Cleveland Indians in 7 games in the World Series – a championship their organization has not seen in 108 years.

To be honest, I didn’t even watch one game. I like baseball, but I don’t LOVE it. What I do love is basketball and that I will spend my precious time watching.

I do have to admit that I sort of regret not watching this series, especially because I love a good come back and that’s exactly what the Cubs did. They came back from a 3-1 deficit – Wow!

They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but when I saw pictures of the players immediately reacting to the win, I could only come up with one – exhilarating.

When was the last time you had that feeling of victory, of complete exhilaration over something you’ve worked so hard for?

Imagine having a goal of victory for as long as the Cubs did and then finally achieving it.

What one long-term health goal achievement would make you feel that victorious?

In my recent Healthiest Month Ever Challenge in our private Facebook challenge group, I shared a little about what baseball has in common with our health goals.

This was a part of my final message to them as we closed out the challenge:

Way to go challengers!! Congratulations on completing the October HME Challenge.

I want you to remember that this challenge is about “ah-ha’s”, trial and error, learning about yourself, perseverance, determination, accountability, and much more.

It is my aim to ensure that you experience all of those things in my challenges. Most importantly, I want you to remember that the little things BECOME the big things, meaning (for you baseball fans), rarely is it the grand slam or even the home run that wins games; rather it’s what you call “small ball” where you hit singles and doubles consistently. That’s what gets you around the bases, keeps the momentum going (because let’s face it, not every at bat is going to be a home run), and eventually wins you games.

The same is true for your health and well-being – it’s the little things you do on a consistent basis that gets you those singles, doubles, and most importantly, momentum that moves you forward. If I can leave you with anything today on our final day as you go off on your own, think “small ball”. Think moving around the bases.

I chose to share that with them because I think it’s common for us to believe that everyday we have to hit a home run — that we either hit a home run today or we’ve failed.

I should know. I led my high school softball team in strikeouts.

You see, I would go up to bat with the intention of hitting a home run every time. I would “swing for the fences” as they say.

When that’s the mentality, it often leads to strike outs because you try to make any pitch even close to the strike zone a home run.

But, that’s simply not realistic. Like I shared with the HME Challengers, it’s the singles and doubles that get you around the bases.

It’s all about consistency and momentum. When you aim for both – those regular singles, doubles, and even bunts you will move around the bases and score.

Does it take longer to score than a home run does? Yes. But, when you aim for home runs all the time (like I did), it becomes all or nothing and it only ends up leaving you returning to the dugout frustrated, disappointed, and I’ll have to admit for me, embarrassed.

I encourage you today to think “small ball” when it comes to your health goals. Think about how you can “hit singles” on a daily basis.

Singles also feel more manageable so you’re more likely to follow through.

Think one healthy meal at a time, one workout at a time, getting to bed 30 minutes earlier, etc. as opposed to home run thinking – healthy meals all week, workout everyday this week, get to bed at 9:30 as opposed to the usual 11:30, etc.

See how “small ball” works? It works for my clients and it’ll work for you.

So if you’re discouraged, remember the Cubs came back from what most would consider an insurmountable obstacle.

If they did, so can you. Just keep your eye on the target and remember that the small things BECOME the big things.