What is the main thing you want to accomplish? That’s your core mission.
As an individual, an organization, or a team you have a core mission.
What is your core mission? What is your objective?
Once defined, ask yourself if you are focused on that core mission. Or are you distracted with the fluff and distractions that are tangents to the objective?
It happens. All the freaking time. We lose our place.
Because the fluff and the distractions become easier to pursue and provide quick gratification. But fluff and distractions don’t get the job done. The fluff and distractions don’t lead to any satisfaction. They don’t make the team better. They don’t educate kids better. They don’t help a community or society become better.
The things that lie outside the core mission suck energy and joy. They create chaos and anxiety. They keep taking without giving any back.
A lifetime ago when I played baseball, I’d occasionally hit a batting slump. HItting a baseball was my one tool as a one-tool baseball player so if I couldn’t hit the ball, I was pretty worthless to my team. While in a slump, I almost certainly forgot my core mission inside the batter’s box which was to hit the dang baseball.
Yes, the core mission was so simple. Hit the ball.
During slumps, my mind would race on just about everything except the core mission. I’d think “I can’t fail again.” “What if I leave runners on base?” “Wow, those hot dogs cooking in the concession stand smell really good.”
My focus and energy would be all over the place. Anxiety would go haywire. My hands would sweat. The pitch would come in and the ball looked like a tiny marble while my body felt like it was encased in Jell-O.
Once I noticed I was paying attention to everything except the core mission of hitting the ball, I could take a few deep breaths, step into the box, and block out everything (including the hot dogs) unrelated to the core mission of putting the bat on the baseball. Like magic, the slump was history.
So if you find yourself or your organization in a slump, lost, confused, floundering, or in a state of chaotic anxiety, step back and refocus on the objective.
Get back to the core mission. If you don’t even remember what it is, take the time to find out.
Whether you’re hitting a baseball, coaching a sports team, running a business, responsible for public health, operating a school district, or simply wanting to live a more faithful life, remember your core mission. Simplify, take a deep breath, and let the fluff and distractions fade away.
Get back to doing what you do. Educating kids, playing right guard, getting your team ready for the season, or leading the most awesome nation on the planet, aiming your energy into the direction of the core mission works.
Keep the faith. Keep the eye on the prize. Do the work. Make your thing better and you’ll make everything around you better.
And Lord knows, in the Spring of 2022, we all can use a little less anxiety and better performance from everything around us.