Sunday, November 6, 2016

One Pitch, One Inning at a Time

My son and I with our new hats!
Sports are my first love. I am a passionate fan. Among the teams that I follow, loyally, are the Chicago Cubs. Some of my earliest memories include going to Wrigley Field with my family as a young boy. As a result, I've been totally engulfed in the 2016 Chicago Cubs World Series run. I've cherished being able to enjoy their historical run with my son as I make my contribution to raising the next generation of Cubs fans.

I was in Chicago when they lost game four of the World Series to go down three games to one. That night, as their lead evaporated and then their deficit grew, the life was sucked out of Harry Caray's Seventh Inning Stretch (where we were watching the game).

But the story that has been told of what happened in the locker room after that game is one of the reasons that makes sports great.

The atmosphere within the locker room was gloomy. Players heads were down and the mood was of despair. Nonetheless, a back-up catcher, David Ross, took the responsibility to change that. Based off of stats alone, he's not your prototypical leader. But leadership is hard to quantify. So regardless, he picked the team-up.

Ross reminded the team that they'd won three games in a row before, lots of times, throughout the season. He assured them that they were going to do it again to finish the season. They were going to do it one pitch and one inning at a time. And then they did it again; they won three games in a row in the most historic of fashions. The Chicago Cubs became World Champions! (I love saying that.)

Photo from Chris Doyle's Twitter account: @coach_Doyle
One pitch, one inning at a time. This is something that we aren't always very good at in education. We look at the big picture, the macro, and it is enough to overwhelm ourselves. It makes us crazy. It keeps us up too late, it causes us stress, it makes us irritable, and it is simply unhealthy. We think about the end-of-the-year (or even beyond) too often. We need to think about one class, one day at a time. Trust that we are making a difference - like the story of the stonecutter. Keep moving forward, and enjoy the moment.

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