Former Boston Red Sox first baseman Bill Buckner will always be remembered for misplaying one bouncing ground ball during extra innings in Game 6 of the 1986 World Series, which denied his team the winning out and allowed the New York Mets to win the game and ultimately, the series.
The strangest thing is, however, that in 1,555 games at first, Buckner’s error rate was less than 1 percent. So how could he mess up such at such a critical time? Well, 19 days before that fateful game, he outlined that exact nightmare scenario befalling him in an interview with a Boston TV station.
“Your dreams are that you’re going to have a great series and win,” Buckner said. “The nightmares are that you’re going to let the winning run score on a groundball through your legs.”
Buckner may have avoided becoming synonymous with one of the biggest blunders in sports history had the ’86 Sox employed the services of mental conditioning expert Trevor Moawad.
Moawad used the video of Buckner’s interview and the game blunder in his keynote address “Developing a Winning Mindset” during the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce’s Sept. 29 Wellness in the Workplace event. He teaches positive mindset training and mental conditioning with the goals of enhancing and improving the performance of professional and collegiate sports franchises, branches of the military and top business organizations.
Buckner’s mistake, according to Moawad, was to consider the idea that he specifically would botch the most vital of game-deciding plays. When that scenario came his way, Buckner had already set himself up for disaster.
“Words really are not true or false, they are tools to program the subconscious to predict and perpetuate positive or negative attitudes and behaviors,” Moawad said. “What we tell ourselves is 10 times more powerful than what anybody else can tell us.”
Moawad, who counts Seattle Seahawks Quarterback Russell Wilson, University of Alabama head football coach Nick Saban and University of Florida head football coach Jimbo Fisher among his clients, said that although he is seen as a perpetually positive guy, he doesn’t focus his lessons on “just being positive.”
“I don’t know if a positive approach works all of the time, but I do know that a negative one does,” he said. “And it works negatively.”
He cedes that maintaining a positive mindset doesn’t guarantee anything – in business or on the field – but also learned that without the right approach, “you have no chance.”
Moawad’s path to a life of motivational speaking and self-help was set at an early age, as his father, Bob Moawad, was the president of the National Association for Self-Esteem and an original contributor to the Chicken Soup for the Soul book series.
The number one lesson he learned from his father and that he applies today is: “you don’t need to be sick to get better.”
In applying his philosophies to business, Moawad said successful employee management starts with setting goals, providing encouragement and communicating effectively. “How do you help your employees think more highly of themselves so they are more willing to take on challenges?” he said. “As a boss, you share responsibility in a mutually decided vision.”
He stresses that in the work environment and beyond, success and productivity rises and falls relative to where you set your attitude. “As you become helpless in your work situation, your personal life or your athletic career, you become hopeless. It’s difficult to succeed in that situation.”
Ultimately, Moawad built his Phoenix-based Moawad Consulting Group on the idea that overall wellness in all of life’s endeavors begins and flows outward from the mind.
“We all have an equal opportunity to be unequal in everything we do,” he said. “No matter where I am today, I can be somewhere different tomorrow.”
About Moawad Consulting Group (MCG)
The Moawad Consulting Group is a dynamic organization committed to delivering advanced mindset solutions to the driven leaders in the world’s most competitive environments. MCG has a proven capability to motivate the motivated, and serve this country’s elite, professional, collegiate, military and top business organizations with the end goal of both enhancing and improving present performance. To learn more about Moawad Consulting Group, visit http://moawadconsultinggroup.com
-Written by Josh Coddington marketing and communications manager for the Greater Phoenix Chamber of Commerce.