Sunday was the last game of the season. A group of boys (my son being one of them) were particularly excited about this game because their coach was giving them the opportunity to pitch. In the world of Little League baseball and 7-year old boys, kid pitch is kind of a big deal. My son had been waiting for this moment since the early days of the season. He wanted to pitch, play games, and repeat. Oh how many car rides to practice each week did I hear (in a whiny voice, no doubt), "but I don't want to practice, I just want to play games!"
Coach S. worked one-on-one with individual kids before game day. During practice, I watched from the bleachers as he demonstrated where to stand, how to wind up while keeping balance, how to bring the front leg up close to the body to avoid leaning too far back, how to slow down and think about where the ball should go, and (probably the most important), take a deep breath before every pitch.
As I watched my son take a deep breath and prepare himself for his pitching debut, I couldn't help but think about how far his baseball skills and his passion for the game had come in the past few months. When I observed him at practice and games, he was focused and ready. He listened and followed directions. He didn't goof around or farm in the outfield. He was determined and wanted to do his best. Even though he didn't always want to practice, he gave it his all, every single time. Well, at least from what I witnessed on the bleachers! I imagine the results of his season would be quite different and perhaps he wouldn't have found himself at the pitcher's mound at all if he hadn't gone to practice and built his foundation of skills necessary for pitching.
I think about how similar my journey has felt recently. As a business owner, there are so many aspects to consider as you try to develop and grow your business and your brand, not to mention the desire to always improve your skills as a photographer. There have been many times when I've wanted to dive right into kid pitch myself, not waste time practicing and doing all the hard work building the foundation for a successful business. Fortunately, every time I've taken my own deep breath, grabbed a pen and established goals, brainstormed marketing ideas, attended workshops, or developed systems to help keep things organized, I have found myself more determined, more focused, and even more passionate about the direction my business is moving. With each new task accomplished, goal achieved, and lesson learned, I find myself slowly climbing towards the top of my own pitcher's mound ...and it's an exciting place to be!