Anyone who knows me knows that I love coaching my son's baseball team. Fall season started yesterday, and I was working with one of the boys on hitting. This boy is very athletic, but he finished the summer season in a bit of a hitting slump. When he got up to hit, he had twisted his body in a way that I still can't figure out and was very tense. As the pitch came, you could see every muscle in his body tense up as he tried to unleash his strength in an all-out effort to hit the ball hard. Needless to say, he missed 9 of the 10 pitches he faced. After his at-bat, I said to him, "Kevin (not his real name), you need to stop trying so hard to hit the ball, and instead let yourself hit it."
When I headed home from practice I found myself thinking about those words and how they apply to virtually everything we do. We all have a tendency to get in our own way. What's interesting is that often the more we want something, the more we get in our own way (read, The Inner Game of Tennis if you want to know why we do this). I know that the more I want a sale, the more I try to get it, and the more careful I need to be. As a matter of fact, I have an entire personal ritual that I go through before making a sales presentation to ensure that I don't allow myself to get in my own way. How different and more effective would I be if, instead of thinking I need to try to make the sale, I though I need to let myself make the sale?
What would the impact be when working on a new skill, you thought "let" instead of "try?" How much more comfortable would you be? How much more would you play?
So, give it a try let yourself...