I played Little League baseball growing up. Well, let’s say I was on the team. To be honest, I was not one of the better players and this greatly limited my playing time. I still enjoyed the games and the atmosphere. It was just fun to be at a ball park even if my view was hindered by the dugout chain link fence.
When I did get the opportunity to step on the field or get up to bat, I tried to make the most of it. My mind would race with different images of players while warming up in the batter’s box. I would switch from being Dave Parker or Willie Stargell (both former Pittsburgh Pirates players). My lack of concentration might have had something do to with my lack of performance.
Anyhow, when I stepped up to the plate all I wanted to do was the make contact with that small white ball on the sweet spot of my bat. Because I knew that if I could hit it there, it would make my very average swing just a little bit better. If you are not familiar with baseball terms, you may have never hear of a sweet spot.
A sweet spot is defined as the point or area on a bat, club, or racket at which it makes most effective contact with the ball. There is a lot of research out there that demonstrates if a player is able to hit a ball with this area of his bat he will experience a greater level of success with his swing.
Needless to say, I did not always hit the ball the sweet spot of my bat. In my mind I hit a lot of balls over the fence. In reality, there was a lot of balls thrown my way that ended up the catcher’s mitt.
Last night I had the privilege of doing some Guest Services training for our hosts, ushers, and parking lot teams. I had a ton of fun. It was something that I looked forward to from the day it was officially put on the calendar and I was not disappointed. The group was perfect. They laughed when they needed to laugh. They fought back some deeper emotions when more personal issues were mentioned. It really went well.
This got me thinking about my sweet spot at work. I enjoy teaching. I enjoy helping people have that light bulb moment. And last night, I experienced both of those things. Everyone has a sweet spot. However, just like on a baseball bat, you need to find it.
I personally experienced 4 things (or clues) yesterday that led me to believe I was operating in my sweet spot that I want to share with you.
As I mentioned earlier, I was excited from the moment this training was put on the calendar. Well, to be honest, I was excited when I came across the materials way before I had it on the calendar. As the day got closer, I got more and more excited. I was bouncing around the entire time I was getting ready to come into the office. I think I was driving my wife a little crazy.
When I got into the office, I told our church’s administrative assistant that I needed to pace myself because I did not want to wear myself out before the event happened that evening. I purposely had to slow myself down throughout the day so I would have some energy left for the training.
If you are experiencing a greater that normal level of excitement, this may be indicative that you are working in your sweet spot.
When 5:45 rolled around and people started showing up, my energy level was soaring. The training started at 6pm and was slated to last until 8:30pm. I had a lot to cover. So I knew we would have to move at a fast pace. And even with all my bouncing around during the day, I had plenty of energy throughout the training.
It was not a struggle to be engaging and interactive as we looked at ways to provide excellent guest care. I have discovered that if I am able to exude lots of energy, those attending my training events will feed off of me. My higher than normal energy level helped bumped everyone else’s in the room up as well.
If you are experiencing an abnormally high level of energy while working on something, this may be indicative that you are working in your sweet spot.
I was excited. I had tons of energy. And this led me to having a ton of Fun! I really had a blast last night. And I believe, from the feedback both during and after the training, that those who attended had fun too.
We laughed. We joked. Smiles were all over the room. It was a very uplifting and inspiring time. The group made it so easy. They participated in activities. They got the points that were presented. They made the points better! It really was a lot of fun. I could see myself doing this more in the future. In fact, I have another training on Saturday and I am back in the excitement phase again.
If you find yourself having a ton of fun while working on something, there is a good chance you are operating in your sweet spot.
All good things come to an end and the training ended on time. Well, 8:31, but who’s counting right? When everything was done, I was done. After a twelve hour experience that day, I was mentally and physically exhausted. I had effectively given everything I had to give and was now paying the price.
One cannot operate on such a high level without eventually having to come back down to earth. I woke up this morning feeling the aftermath of my day of excitement, energy and enjoyment. It has taken me a little longer than normal to get moving, but I expected that to be the case this morning.
I would not trade it for the world. There is something to be said about giving something your all. When you apply that effort in the right direction, a healthy dose of exhaustion is coming your way. Rest for a bit, you earned it.
When all things are said and done. You experienced high level of excitement and anticipation. You had enough energy to fuel a small town. You and those who around you had a ton of fun. And you come crashing back down and sleep sounds so wonderful. This can indicate that you have and are operating in your sweet spot.