Babe Ruth, JFK and the Power Of Declaration

Babe Ruth Called Shot Declaration
Copyright AP.

He stood up to the plate, gestured towards center field stands with a powerful declaration and only moments later, belted one over the fence. Babe Ruth’s home run during the fifth inning of game three of the 1932 world series baseball game was a pivotal moment in sports history.

The famous “called shot” has been mimicked by almost every child who grew up playing baseball. As a kid, my brother and I would often do the same while playing whiffle ball in our backyard. It is not calling forth cockiness. It conjures a sense of supreme confidence and clarity that only a truly committed and high competent person would dare to invoke.

Proclamations are powerful.

JFK made another famous proclamation, in a field as far away from the brawn of sport as you could get, in declaring that the United States would be the leader in putting a man on the moon. With this statement, the hearts and minds of the entire nation (and the collective astronomically high IQ of NASA) became transfixed on the worthy goal.

Nine years later, Neil Armstrong stepped off the Apollo 11 landing craft and onto the surface of the moon. Three days later, the entire crew made it back to Earth safely, bringing the world into a new era of space exploration.

Proclamations don’t need to be made to the public. They can be private, or shared with a trusted partner, mentor or coach. The important thing is that they are made.

If you haven’t taken the time to create a vision for your future that motivates you, get started. If you don’t have a goal that makes you excited to get up in the morning, book time on your calendar to create one as soon as possible.

According to research by Dominion University, the act of establishing a goal, writing it down and sharing it with a trusted partner on a regular basis doubles your chances of success compared to only creating a goal but keeping it to yourself.

Doubling your success rate understates the benefit of setting goals as the study did not monitor what happened to those who didn’t set goals to begin with!

When you create a goal, you are proclaiming to the universe that you are building a bigger and brighter future for yourself and those around you. You are taking a stand for something you believe in. You are making the crucial first step in asking yourself the powerful question “What do I want?” and not settling until you get to an answer.

When is it time to “go public” with your goal, and proclaim it to the world, as per Babe or JFK? I like Derek Sivers advice in keeping your most important goals private, but not forever…

Set goals and work with someone, ideally a trusted partner or coach, to help you create a future that is in line with your full potential. Once you have started making progress towards your goal and are fully committed to it, share with others, but only do so once you are entirely confident that you will do everything possible to achieve what you set out to do! By sharing with others, you enlist social pressure (in a good way) to help you gather even more momentum towards achieving the goal you so passionately want.

Now is the time to apply this idea to your own life:

  1. Figure out what you want.
  2. Declare it to yourself first.
  3. Share it with a trusted advisor / coach to ensure it is as big and bold as you need it to be.
  4. Share it with the world – only after first making progress and fully committing yourself to the task!

Also published on Medium.