Going for it

In business and in life, you sometimes just have to go for it. Not always, but sometimes. For example, if you are driving down the interstate, you shouldn’t go for it and drive as fast as you can. If you do, the po-po will show you your lodging for the night. If your child comes to you for advice, you go for it and give them all you have.

For many years my family would go on this annual camping trip the 4th of July week to Vogel State Park located in the blue ridge mountains. My wife’s family started going when she was just a child and our daughters grew up expecting to camp at Vogel every 4th of July. The last several years we haven’t gone but some of the dearest friends we have ever known, we met them at Vogel.

One thing that was always a constant at Vogel, was nightly softball games. The name of this blog is “going for it” and was named after those softball games. The game always reminded me of life in that there are times to play it safe and then there are times you (metaphorically speaking) just go for it.

We had this friend who would play sometimes named Andy. If you could copy anyone in softball, it would be Andy. He looked like a normal guy who could probably play well and get by, but when it was his turn to bat, he was a whole different person. It was like be became someone else.

The ball field had a creek that ran across the outfield that was about 225 feet from home plate. If the ball made it to the creek in the air, it was a home run whereas if it bounced in, it was a double. The first time I saw Andy bat will be forever in my memory because it was a lesson in life as well as softball. I remember he swung at the ball so hard, his left shoe came off.. I looked up at the ball and it was not only over the creek, but it landed another 150 feet beyond the creek in the camp ground. It was the farthest I had ever seen anyone hit the ball on that field. To top that off, the ball was one we had been using for several games and was already mushy. If it had been a new ball, we probably wouldn’t have been able to find it.

At the time Andy hit that ball, I vividly remember thinking about life and what it means to try as hard as you can to do something. I can name several times in my life where I literally tried as hard as I could to do something. When you do that, those feelings never leave you and become part of who you are and may even play a role in who you become. It is very rare to see people who are good at many things. It is much more common for people to be good at only a few things. It doesn’t matter if you are a full-time mom, dad, business person, speaker, author, sales person, teacher etc. What does matter is that you choose to try as hard as you can at something. It doesn’t have to be a life changing, rather it can be as simple as being a good listener or a friend who can be trusted.

The great thing is it is your choice. Using a golf term to make the point, sometimes you must choose between laying up and playing it safe or going for it. I say, with family, you should go for it and try as hard as you can to be the very best example you can be. Regarding our work life, try as hard as you can to be found faithful, honest, hard-working and trustworthy. I believe the rest will take care of itself. KT

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