6 Ways to Overcome Adversity, Banana Ball, and the Law of Contribution – Your Champions Brew

You cannot give what you do not have.

Happy Friday, Brew Nation! 

Grab your favorite coffee cup, sit back, relax, and get ready to sip on some enriching and thought-provoking content that will equip you to thrive in all areas of your life:

  • Worry Less – Easier said than done, right? That’s what people usually say when you tell them to ‘Worry Less.’ But seriously, life’s a journey filled with ups and downs, and we’re always either heading into a challenge, in the thick of it, or coming out the other side. Inspired by a 5-day reading plan titled “Born To Lead” on the Bible App, I came across six practical ways to deal with adversity. If you can master one or more of these techniques, you’ll be able to face life’s inevitable trials with more confidence.
  1. Maintain a good attitude. Trouble is inevitable, but it is also a tool that produces spiritual, emotional, and psychological strength. When we resist the temptation to feel that our trials are unfair and resist the pressure to respond in a negative way, we develop the “mental muscle” needed to overcome whatever obstacles arise. We learn to analyze the situation, ask for divine assistance, and anticipate a positive outcome.
  2. Believe in the God who resides within you. Often in the face of adversity, our self-esteem takes a hit. Don’t allow any circumstances to make you feel less worthy. Your challenges do not define you. Adversity is just an experience; it is not your identity. Whatever happens, you are strong enough to regain control over your life. You simply need to remember that with God you can do all things (Philippians 4:13)
  3. Rely on your support network. Everyone can get down occasionally. During these times, you can rely on your support network to cheer you on and encourage you to get back up again. Don’t be afraid to ask for help. Rely on colleagues, friends, or loved ones to help get you through hard times. Challenges are easier to handle when we have someone to talk to. The people in our support group can remind us of who we are when adversity tempts us to forget. Nurture your support group and do not forget that support goes both ways. Be there for others during their trying times.
  4. Don’t be overly critical of yourself. Beware of allowing your mistakes or any setback to define who you are. You are not a failure if you lose your job or get passed over for a high-profile role. You still have worth and value, and you just need to get back up and prove it. Every defeat gives you the chance to learn from your mistakes, if any, and be wiser in the future.
  5. Don’t be afraid to accept responsibility. Sometimes adversity seems to come inexplicably out of the blue; other times, it comes as a result of our own actions. If you find that you have made unwise decisions, don’t let this incapacitate you. Accept responsibility for your part in creating the problem and learn from your mistakes. Prepare a game plan to take those necessary next steps.
  6. Don’t neglect self-care. Ironically, the key to resilience is first learning how to stop rather than forge ahead. It is essential to take care of your physical, mental, and spiritual health. Eating right, getting enough sleep, and exercising are critical.

These tools are most effective when they are already in our toolkit, ready to be deployed when adversity strikes. Don’t wait until you are in the middle of a storm to prepare. 

Are you aware that The Champions Brew explores various topics that I frequently coach and consult on with other leaders and organizations? If you or someone you know is seeking to elevate their business or personal life from underperforming to uncommon, I would love to connect with you and discuss 1:1 or group coaching, as well as performance consulting. In fact, click the following link to schedule a FREE CALL to explore how coaching could benefit you and your team. Let’s work together to unleash your full potential and achieve your goals!
  • Have Fun – if you consider yourself a baseball purist, you might want to skip ahead to the next segment of the Brew. But for those adventurous souls like myself, who find it increasingly challenging to stay engaged with the average professional baseball game that seems to drag on forever ( a mind-numbing 2 hours and 38 minutes in 2023 and that’s an improvement from the 2021 average of 3 hours and 11 minutes!), the Savannah Bananas offer a refreshing alternative. Led by the innovative owner Jesse Cole, this team has revolutionized the game by introducing “Banana Ball” – a delightful and fan-centric version of baseball that consists of 11 innovative rules designed to heighten the entertainment value and captivate their paying customers:
  1. Win the inning, get the point – Every inning is worth one point.  In the LAST inning, every run counts as one point
  2. Two-hour time limit – LOVE this one.  No new inning starts after two hours.
  3. No stepping out – If the hitter steps out of the box, it’s a strike (I know my dad would love this one!)
  4. No bunting – If you bunt, you are ejected from the game
  5. Batters can steal first – On any pitch, the hitter can steal first base.
  6. No walks allowed – If a pitcher throws ball four, it becomes a sprint
  7. No mound visits – Coaches cannot visit the mound.
  8. If a fan catches a ball, it’s an out! – I bet the guy at Wrigley in the playoffs back in XXXX would have loved this rule! 
  9. Showdown tiebreaker – If the game is tied at the end, the game goes to a showdown where the hitter must score.
  10. Banana Ball Challenge – Each team and the fans get the opportunity to challenge a ruling on the field.
  11. Golden Batter Rule – One time a game, a team may send any hitter in the lineup to bat in any spot.

Does it work?  The fans have spoken.   In 2023, the team left the Coastal Pacific League (CPL) to focus on Banana Ball full time, launching a 33-city, 22-state tour in February. The team currently has a ticket waitlist of more than half a million and over 5.8 million followers on TikTok, more than the top seven MLB teams combined!!!  I hope to see the Bananas in action soon!

Learn more about Banana ball here in this Fast Company article.

  • Read More –We made it to the end!  This week is a review of Law #15 in The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth by John Maxwell.  Each week, I’ve traveled with you through a chapter of this book.  I hope that you have enjoyed the review and insights and have been able to implement new habits as a result.  The 15th and final law is:

Law # 15 – The Law of Contribution

Growing Yourself Enables You to Grow Others

I could have titled this chapter the Law of Growing Champions.  Growth is a personal core value of mine and growing others is a by-product of the Law of Contribution.  In the final chapter of John Maxwell’s transformative book, “The 15 Invaluable Laws of Growth,” the Law of Contribution is a great finisher. It emphasizes the importance of personal development not only for self-improvement but also for the benefit of others. Just as a river flows and gives away its water, we should aim to be generous and giving individuals who contribute to the growth of those around us. Here are a few of my key takeaways from Maxwell’s teachings on cultivating a mindset of contribution.

  1. Be Grateful – Expressing gratitude is a powerful way to acknowledge the people who have invested in our growth journey. From parents, teachers and pastors to friends, bosses and mentors, many individuals have given me invaluable support and guidance. The best way I can show gratitude to them is to pour into others and create a ripple effect of growth.
  2. Put People First – George Washington Carver’s quote reminds us of the importance of treating others with compassion and empathy: “Success should not be measured by the number of people serving us but by the number of people we serve.”  Placing people at the forefront of our actions and decisions allows us to make a lasting impact on their lives. By investing in the growth and well-being of others, we contribute to their personal development and create a positive ripple in the world.
  3. Define Success as Sowing, Not Reaping – The disciplines and habits we develop during our personal growth journey may not yield immediate results. It may take years!  It takes time and persistence to see the fruits of our labor. Embracing the mindset of a farmer who patiently sows seeds and celebrates the wins of resilience and persistence allows us to appreciate the journey.
  4. Keep Growing to Keep Giving – Continued growth is essential for maintaining a vibrant and impactful life. When we cease to learn and develop in any area, a part of us atrophies . The clock is ticking down to a time when we no longer have anything left to give and I want to live the life that Erma Bombeck described when she said, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and I could say: ‘I used everything you gave me.’”

As Jim Rohn wisely stated, “the greatest gift we can give others is our own personal development”. By growing ourselves and dedicating ourselves to inspiring, encouraging, and equipping others, we create a cycle of growth and contribution. The Law of Contribution reminds us that personal growth is not solely about individual progress but also about making a positive impact on the lives of others. We should all embrace the Law of Contribution and strive to be ‘rivers’ of development, continuously pouring into the growth of those around us.

What’s Next?

I would love to hear from you! Which book would you like to explore together next? John Maxwell has a wealth of wisdom to offer. Here are a few options:

“The 17 Indisputable Laws of Teamwork”: A deep dive into the essential principles that foster effective teamwork and collaboration.

“Today Matters: 12 Daily Practices to Guarantee Tomorrow’s Success”: A guide to prioritizing daily actions and making the most of each day for long-term success.

“The 21 Indispensable Qualities of a Leader”: Exploring the fundamental qualities that every leader should possess to make a significant impact.

What sounds good to you? Drop me a note in the comments.

  • Quote of the week:    “I have one life and once chance to make it count for something… My faith demands that I do whatever I can, wherever I am, whenever I can, for as long as I can with whatever I have to try to make a difference.” – Jimmy Carter

What You Need to Do:

Call to Action:  How well do you do at handling adversity?  Take another look at the tips above and assess yourself in each one of those areas on a scale of 1 to 5.  Pick one of the tools you want to improve upon and change one thing this week.  For me, it is in the area of being self-critical.  I will commit to being more aware when I am using negative self-talk and turn it around.

It’s an honor to be your trusted “Friday Coffee Guy”.  Each week, I’m excited to provide yet another round of curated content that I’ve been reading, listening to, watching, or thinking over. The purpose of the Champions Brew is to inspire, equip and encourage you to become the uncommon leader you were designed to be. I am so grateful for your decision to invest a few moments with me! I hope you enjoyed this week’s edition of Champions Brew. If you did, I would appreciate it if you would share it with someone who might enjoy it as well and ask them to subscribe! I will make sure they automatically get this email every week.

Until next time, Go and Grow Champions!

P.S. – Are you a podcast fan?  Maybe the Uncommon Leader podcast is for you.    Are you interested in being a guest on the Uncommon Leader Podcast?  Do you have a story to tell?  Email me [email protected] and let’s have a chat and set something up!!

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To become Champion leader, we have to be on a continuous improvement journey for ourselves and others.  We have to be able to take advantage of the precious seconds that we have each day.  
There are things that I come across each week that help me, inspire me, relax me, motivate me, and are sometimes are just funny that I want to share with you so that you can smile more, build faith, think positively, network well, exercise often, eat healthy, and grow daily.

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