Basically the same game as Kickball, only with huge mats as bases. It was in 8th grade that whichever team I was on became unbeatable. Not because I was a great kicker (I did happen to hit someone in the groin because they thought I was going to just tip the ball and run. I sure showed them!). The fact my team was undefeated was from my talent in getting the other players out. It seems logically fun that I would get them out by hitting them with the ball before they reached the base.
The trick to my success was that I did not throw the ball normally. Most people would aim, step and throw directly a the opponents chest. No, I couldn’t be normal, average or expected. Once a teammate would toss the ball into my hands I would step, spin to gain momentum and catapult the ball towards the direction I thought the opponent would be. The aiming was done at the last split second before release.
That reason the spin-and-throw move became my strategy was that the first time I did it, I was successful in getting the opponent out, which happened to be the last out we needed. I’ll admit, everyone did look at me weirdly after that, but they continued to cheer and thought “Hey, if it works.” Now it wasn’t necessarily talent that made me successful, or the fact I may have enjoyed hitting people with the ball more than I should have. No, really I was successful with it because I had support, approval and people cheering me on to use my signature move.
Let’s back step. I used to throw the ball normally but I would often miss, decreasing my confidence and my teammates expectations. Since my success rate was less than 90% it seemed right to switch it up. Adding my twist and launch, having been successful the first time, rebooted the confidence. I started at 100% again with the excitement of the other 15 teammates and the awe of the 16 opponents.
The purpose of this story: When success rates go below 90%, change something, do something differently, throw the ball uniquely, because when you do and it works the first time, you start at 100% again. From then on, the confidence and the assurance by all of your teammates that you will be successful gives you the talent you need to continue throwing the ball in a way that defies adversity.
Had I played long enough to experience my success rate drop below 90%, you would have seen another new enticing move that allowed me to strike the opponents out. Change, continuous change, that is key. Those who suggest that by doing the same thing you get the same results are either joking or don’t understand that by doing the same thing, the results weaken and expectations from your peers shorten. But when you switch it up, do something unexpected and do it successfully the first time, not only do you win, but your team does too.
It also distinguishes who your teammates are and who are your opponents.
Stay Positive & Change It Up
Garth E. Beyer