In two short hours, I learned a lot yesterday about life. It all happened while at the baseball field. I had our afternoon all planned out. One game at 1 pm. I double-checked the schedule that morning just to be sure. My youngest didn't have a t-ball game, I was sure. We would all go to the field and watch the game. Water bottles, check. Mitts, check. Hats and uniforms, check. Cleats, check. In the car on time, check.
Shortly after the game started I ran into a mom and her son. She said to me "We've got a game a 1:30 right?". For some reason I thought she was talking about the 1:00 game and replied "Yep". And thought nothing more of it.
Lesson 1: Having a plan doesn't mean it'll work out
Stay calm. Even the best laid out plans are interrupt-able. We didn't have the uniform, cleats, or mitt for my son's 1:30 game and it wasn't until 1:25 that we realized that there was a game. Thank goodness for the staying calm under pressure attitude of my husband, who came to the rescue.
Lesson 2: Don't miss the signs
If I had been paying attention to what was being said by that mom at the time she spoke with me, I would have been able to take faster action. Also, in hindsight, I had seen my son's coach when we arrived at the field, but my mind was focused on my plan, not the situation. Be open to changing your direction.
Lesson 3: If you don't know the rules, you can't break them
Watching kids play baseball is wonderful. My older son played catcher and didn't catch a single pitch. In fact, I don't think he even knew he was supposed to. The ball would miss his mitt and he would just wait for the next ball to come. He didn't try to pick up the balls that were rolling around the batter's feet. The coach did. I am pretty sure, in his mind, he was doing what he should do- squat behind the plate. It didn't bother him one bit that he wasn't doing the other things. He didn't know and I guess no-one had told him.
Lesson 4: Do what you love and the money will follow
From the bleachers, the mom of an assistant coach (teenager) was talking about his summer jobs. This assistant coach loved being outside. He didn't want to work a cash register indoors. Besides the lawn mowing and gardening odd jobs he did in his neighborhood, he had talked to a landscaper. His mom said that he wanted to get in with a landscaping firm now, so that after he had completed his schooling, he would already have a foot in the door with them.
Lesson 5: Have fun
With all the chaos and mishaps, both my boys had a great day. They fielded some good balls, whacked a couple of balls into the outfield and nurtured some friendships. We cheered each other on, laughed and… had fun.
These 5 lessons are what life is all about. They are also transferable to your job search which it absolutely why I wrote this story.
Hannah Morgan speaks and writes about job search and career strategies. She founded CareerSherpa.net to educate professionals on how to maneuver through today’s job search process. Hannah was nominated as a LinkedIn Top Voice in Job Search and Careers and is a regular contributor to US News & World Report. She has been quoted by media outlets, including Forbes, USA Today, Money Magazine, Huffington Post, as well as many other publications. She is also author of The Infographic Resume and co-author of Social Networking for Business Success.