“How to hit home runs: I swing as hard as I can, and I try to swing right through the ball… The harder you grip the bat, the more you can swing it through the ball, and the farther the ball will go. I swing big, with everything I’ve got. I hit big or I miss big. I like to live as big as I can.”
“Never let the fear of striking out get in your way.”
What a guy! Here’s a bit of baseball lore I love: The Babe holds the record for the most home runs, but he also had the most strikeouts: 1330 to be exact. When someone asked him what he was thinking about after a strikeout, he said, “My next home run.” He also said something that really shows his mental toughness: “Every strike brings me closer to the next home run.”
Wow! I wish I could say the same thing about my work. When I come up empty, I often take my eye off the ball and get discouraged. Maybe it’s the same for you. If so, then we need to take inspiration from the Babe and think more like he did.
Just recently, I’ve hit another rough patch with my YA novel. It’s been perking along nicely and I’ve written through the first draft. I’m revisiting the beginning and frankly, as one friend once said of another, it’s got “some issues.” I’ve been struggling about how to revise it, but not making much headway. Now that I think about it, I’ve been afraid of striking out, so instead of swinging big, I put my bat down. A bad idea! Now, I have to get my rhythm back.
So, let’s take a tip from the Babe and get out there! Let’s take our ideas and run with them! To hit big, we have to swing big. And if we swing big, we’re also going to miss big some of the time. But hey, that comes with the territory. When you miss big, keep in mind another Babe bon mot, “You just can’t beat the person who never gives up.” Write on!