Working with The Boy’s Tee Ball team tonight. We’ve really been working on his throwing. Hold the ball high. Step — throw — follow through. Sometimes he does; sometimes he doesn’t. Tonight for the first time, we seemed to have a breakthrough. There was even an occasional ‘POP!’ in pop’s glove.Then we had a slide toward the abyss. Arm out to the side. Leg out to the side. Ball sailing into the outfield. All the prodding in the world wasn’t getting it done. So the ‘real’ coach walked up, likely hearing my frustration at trying to get the proper behavior.“Let’s see you throw, boy,” says he.And The Boy proceeds to uncork the fastest ball yet. Right in the glove. Three more followed just like it. I laughed hard and loud. When the coach showed up, he showed his best.But just like speakers who are “gamers,” we all know that if he doesn’t continue to work and practice the correct way, but rather saves it for a few select showings, then soon there will be others who can throw harder and better, and in game time, he might not be able to do it right. When the rushed throw under pressure is needed, it might hit mom in the bleachers.If we view our communication skills as presentation skills that can be turned on and off, then when it comes time to communicate well, we may not be able to turn them on correctly. Our prize presentation might end up in left field — left out. But if we communicate and practice every time we open our mouth, we won’t know when it’s game time or practice — we’ll Just Do It! And if there are tweaks needed to our games, get a coach.
Practice like you want to play.