The Moral of John Olerud

John Olerud was a great major league baseball hitter. He has lifetime averages of:


  • AVG         .295
  • OBP         .398
  • SLG         .465
  • OBS         .863

 In baseball, as in life, there are peaks and valleys. There are times when we are hitting great and there are other times…times when it is hard to make contact at all. It is common to take good hitting for granted and to over analyze the times when it is hard to get a hit. Often we will spend time and effort studying our performance when we are in a slump. This seems natural. We do it often. However, this is a secondrate habit and ill- conceived model.

 A first-rate habit and a successful model is to study and be mindful of our performance when we are hitting well. This is the moral of John Olerud. He studied his hitting when he was doing well. He kept an archive of his best hitting. Filling his mind with images, sounds, and notes of what constituted his best hitting. Reinforcing what worked well. When he found himself  in a slump – he would watch that positive video, read those notes, and listen to those sounds. This is first rate! This model returns us quickly to do our best.

 The next time things are going well, which I hope is today, take a look around. Notice your activity. Work to record the successful confident feelings. Catalog the sound, aroma, texture, and image of your best performance. Fill your mind with these elements. Study your best self. The more detailed your archive, the more effective it will be when you need it most.

 What did your best day feel like?

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