A baseball player standing on the mound, who is in the majors, can look back at all the pitches they have thrown in their life to get them to that spot. A ballerina waiting behind for the curtain to rise at Carnegie Hall can stand poised and think of all the repetitive adage moves they had to do in the studio and the pain they endured. An artist whose show is about to open to the public, in a major gallery, stands there staring at their painting and recalling the endless nights and long days to create their masterpiece. The accomplished author who is now on the best sellers list because Oprah read their writing and the public demands their book. There are so many examples of people and careers and how they have come together to hit the major leagues. There is no doubt that their efforts were equally to task that got them to the major leagues.
But there are millions of people who have put forward a huge effort and pain to be acknowledged but have never risen out of the minor leagues. They toil and are in it every day the same way as an accomplished artist or athlete. The person in the minor league even knows they have to work harder and harder to make it to the big leagues…but the results don’t show them to be in the majors and they remain at the minor league. Now all this may seem dismal or futile. At a certain point, should I not give up because a realization sets in that I am only going to be in the minor leagues? No matter what I do, I can’t crack into the upper tiers.
I had this discussion with myself recently. I have put so much effort and work towards being a speaker, coach and author; however, I am not in the upper stratosphere of those who are doing what I would like to do. How many more people could I help if I had the status of an Anthony Robbins or a Robin Sharma? I would not ease up on the peddle at that level…oh no, I would hit the gas harder and do even more and could help more people…and yet, I am not them or their status. Part of it is because they are unique in their own rights and I can’t be them because they already exist.
I told myself that I am putting forward a major league effort but my results are not at the major league level. Will I ever be able to crack into that area? Do I ease up since the minor league is the elevation that I can attain and destined to be in? Well, I don’t see this as a negative discussion. Even if I am destined for the remaining days to be in the minors, I am going to be the best minor league player there is. The reason for this thought is that, whether I make the major league of speaking or writing, I will keep going and doing what I know can help others. Instead of thinking of myself making the major leagues or not, I feel that those people I can help one on one, need a major league thinker in their corner who is approachable and cares for them. Perhaps in their eyes I am a major league individual and for that, maybe I am in the majors.
When I received the Caring Canadian Award from the Governor General’s office, the message was clear that this is not a resting point, it is a calling to do even more. Push harder, and I did (do)! When I was growing up, I was shy, awkward and quiet. If you were to tell me back then that when you are 54 years old, this is what you will be doing, the experiences you will gain and the people you will meet, I would have said no way. When you are in the journey, your head is down and you might not look up to see what you have done or accomplished. You might not appreciate the view because all you know is you have to keep moving forward. My goal was never to be a best selling author, no it was to write a book. My goal was not to be on stage to get paid $20,000 for a 45 minute keynote speech, it was to be able to share my message in a very personal, authentic and passionate way. Maybe from that, I can see how I have gone from minor league thinking to major league results, on a personal level, because I have far exceeded my expectations of what I was capable of.
Boundaries need to be pushed and feeling content or comfortable is not in your vocabulary. You become a role model for others who see the work and actions and know that you are within their reach and at the same time, hold something of value that someone in the major league holds. Each and every one of us is fighting this minor/major league battle. At a certain point, we have to be comfortable with ourselves to say that as long as my effort is major, the results can be what they may be, but I tried day in and day out to be the best version of me. I am totally comfortable being the top end of a minor league status…but I am still keeping an eye on where I should be. It is what keeps me going so I don’t feel I can sit and stop. I will continue to create. We are all major league player to someone around us.
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