I realize it may be a fine line, but I would much rather get beat than lose, at anything.

I am helping coach my 12 year old son’s baseball team this year. With the exception of a small core group of boys, this is a brand new team. We’ve been having batting cage practice for a couple of months now, but have only had one outdoor practice. Nevertheless, we signed up for a pre-season tournament. We did so to get in some game time, get a sense of what we need to work on, and to start playing together, as a team.

We lost each of the first 2 games by 2 runs, we won the third game, and got beat pretty handily the last game. At the end of the tournament, I reminded the boys, that as much as anything, our goal was to leave the weekend a better team than we started. Mission accomplished. I talked about baseball being both a physical game as well as a mental game, a team sport as well as an individual sport.

I also pointed out that, even though our tournament record was 1 - 3, we really only got beat once. The first two games we lost.

You may be asking, “What’s the difference?”

Well, as I see it, the difference is whether you take the loss because of your effort or that of your opponent.

In the game we got beat, their pitcher was lights out and their batters just kept hitting against our most dominant pitcher. It was definitely their effort that drove the outcome of the game.

However, we lost the first games because of the way we played. We were tentative at the plate and in the field, we swung at bad pitches, and we made both physical and mental errors. It was our effort that drove the outcome of those two games.

What about you? When you look at those situations you don’t win, are you losing or getting beat? Do you play tentatively? Do you prepare in advance? Do you “leave it all on the field”? Do you look at selling as just an individual, rather than a team sport?

Getting beat still sucks, but I’d rather get beat by someone else than lose because of my own poor effort.

Photo by snappybex.