Life Coaching Lessons from the 2016 Chicago Cubs

It's probably no secret, but we have World Series fever around here.  Our team, the Chicago Cubs, has finally made it into the World Series.  Well, let me correct that, my team has made it.  I'm not sure Moose is ready to claim the Cubs as his people.  And while all this hoopla is going on, I realized the other day, that there are some great life lessons we can learn as we watch the Cubs and the Indians battle it out. 

But let's start at the beginning.  You see, the Cubs aren't just a baseball team to me - they are the holder of so many memories.  My position as fan began as a young girl.  My mom had enrolled me in Kiddie Kollege Campers Day Camp.  And yes, it was spelled with a K, in case you're wondering. 

Each year, the Kollege Campers would go on a field trip to see a Cubs game from the bleachers in Wrigley field.  In my younger years, I would eat my way through the game.  First came the hot dog.  Then Cracker Jack.  And topped off with the chocolately malted cup with the wooden spoon, whose name  I can't remember. 

Games were always during the day.  Back in olden times when I was young, the Friendly Confines didn't have lights.  Only during the day.  Your time options became 1:05 or 3:05. Until the lights became an issue.  Wrigley finally erected lights among a bit of tension.  All that to say, I've never been to a night game.  Maybe I should put it on my bucket list? 

Being a fan ran in the family.  My dad and his siblings grew up in Wrigleyville before it was cool to grow up in Wrigleyville.  They didn't have a lot of money but they loved the Cubs.  When they were young boys, my dad and Uncle Ed, or so the story goes, would stand outside of Wrigley Field and sell newspapers until they earned enough money to buy a bleacher ticket.  Apparently the going price was $ 0.25 unlike the $ 2000 price tag to get into the World Series today. 

Luckily for me, I evolved into a fan who wasn't all about the food and vendors but about the love of the game.  I attended games with my parents and friends.  And despite how much they lost, we still loved our Cubbies.  

I know what you're thinking...why do we care?  I get it.  Most of the Cleveland fans are sick of hearing about my Cubbies.  And most of the rest of you are asking yourself, "Isn't this thing over yet?  It's November!"  I hear you.  I get you.  But here's what I also get. Observing these two amazing team duke it out has taught me some life coaching lessons you won't want to miss. Ready? 

Your Back Story Matters

I write a lot about our story and why it matters.  God is writing your story, day by day and moment by moment.  People are intrigued by your mountain top experiences, as well, as the hardship you've broken through.  

The Cubs are no different.  If you're not aware, there's a goat and a curse by a bar owner because the Cubs and their fans in 1945 (when my dad was 5) didn't like the smell of the goat.  He cursed the Cubbies from winning ever again.  It's held true and they haven't won a World Series title in 108 years.  

And while you and I don't have the back story of a goat and a curse from a bar owner, our story matters.  People will be inspired by our story.  People will be blessed by our story.  But we have to believe in our story and that it matters.  You and I, can embrace our story and allow God to use every twist and turn.  Just saying. 

Believing In Yourself Matters

A little shout out to the Cleveland fans, but the Indians have confidence.  They know their skills.  They are playing great baseball.  And, I hate to admit it, it didn't look good for a couple of games for my Cubbies.  The difference, the Cubbies appeared to had lost their confidence.  No confidence in batting.  Errors on the field.  I was biting my nails through the entire game. 

You and I need to know who we are and have confidence in our gifts, talents and personality.  When we like who we are and what we bring to the table, we show up with confidence and connection.  We can choose to be present because we're not worried about what we bring to the table or what others think of our performance.  We get to show up as us, all in, and shine with how God made us. 

How do you do this, you say?  We start by evaluating what's getting in the way.  At coaching school, I learned about this tool surrounding our inner critic.  Our inner critic is that voice that tells you that you're not good enough, or you shouldn't risk failing or questions what others will think.  The inner critic's job is to keep you paralyzed. 

During group coaching sessions here at One Foot, I've been known a time or two to ask clients to draw a picture of their inner critic.  Once they've completed their drawing, I ask them to write talking bubbles (like in a cartoon) with negative things they are saying to themselves.  Once they're done, I ask them to challenge their thinking.  Are these things true?  What would God say about these negative thoughts?  Believing in who God says you are can go along way to helping each of us show up with confidence. And confidence matters in the game of life. 

It's Never Too Late To Change Your Life

It's been 108 years.  Over one hundred years where Cubs fans from 4 different generations have been waiting for a big win.  Over hundred years of being what we call in Chicago - the loveable losers.  But in the last couple years, a new and young team has stepped onto the field and donned a Cub on their arm.  They don't care about goats.  They don't care about history.  They have chosen to believe it's never too late (even when they're down 3-1 in the World Series). 

I have this saying written on a chalkboard in my living room/group coaching room.  It's just never too late.  It's never too late to change your marriage.  It's never too late to change your parenting.  It's never too late to change your career path.  It's never too late to become what you've always dreamed you could be.  It's never too late to become who God dreamed you would be when He created you.  Start today. 

It Only Takes One Step

As a life coach, I see different clients and I have my own moments when I need to coach myself. What often keeps us from changing our life, is the idea that it's just too big.  There's too much to do.  I'll never make it.  We've forgotten that all it takes to change your life is focusing on the next step. 

In the National League Championship playoff series against the Dodgers, the Cubs were down. Their offense had grown quiet.  They weren't getting hits and runs.  We were holding our breaths.  We were waiting for a breakout moment.   

Ben Zobrist, the left fielder, stepped up to the plate with a bunt.  A teeny, tiny hit.  He got on base and the next guy got on base and before we knew it the Cubs were winning.  And they won the next one too.  One small step from Zobrist, one giant steps for Cubs fan everywhere.  Okay, this isn't walking on the moon - but exciting nonetheless. 

You and I need a little bunt.  You and I need to realize we don't need to homer to score and change our lives.  Maybe we just need to take a baby step.  I don't know what that baby step looks like for you.  It could be doing the research on a new career.  It could be picking up that parenting book to get some new tools.  It could be asking your spouse on a date.  It could be volunteering to serve in a place you'd never expected to serve. 

One foot faith is a faith that keeps learning.  One foot faith embraces the story that God is writing for our lives and walks in confidence because we know that every little personality trait and gift is from Him.  One foot faith chooses to change their life one step at a time.  So, walk out to home plate and lay down a bunt.  You'll be glad you did. 

I'd love to hear from you regardless of your allegiance to Chicago or Cleveland.  Who are you rooting for?  And what is one small bunt-like step you can make this week?  Comment here or send me a private message so I can pray for you!