Pat Fiorello - Art Elevates Life

Art & Inspiration from professional artist and instructor Pat Fiorello. Pat is known for her romantic landscape, garden and floral paintings in oil and watercolor. Her paintings often depict beautiful places like Italy and France. Pat teaches painting workshops in the U.S., Caribbean and Europe. She is passionate about inspiring others to include art in their life. Whether creating it or simply appreciating and enjoying it, there are so many ways that art elevates life!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

How having a batting average mentality can keep you going

“I've missed more than 9000 shots in my career. I've lost almost 300 games. 26 times, I've been trusted to take the game winning shot and missed. I've failed over and over and over again in my life. And that is why I succeed.”
- Michael Jordan
Winter Whites & Berries
11 x 14
Oil Painting by Pat Fiorello

 I guess basketball is more like painting than I realized. You need a lot of time on the court ( I call it "brush mileage"), lots of failed attempts to learn from and an attitude that persistence will pay off in order to succeed and grow.

I'm not a sports fan by any stretch of the imagination, but sports analogies can sometimes help drive home a point for artists too. When I coach fellow artists or students, I always encourage a "batting average " mentality

Major league players don't hit 100% of the balls thrown over the plate. If they hit 3 out of 10 they are probably considered a hero and will end up in the hall of fame someday. So why do we as artists expect everything to turn out? 

Whether it's show entries or gallery submissions, we are going to hear our share of "No's, or rejections along the way . Even when creating the artwork  we will have some pieces that just don't turn out. If we expect 100% "Yeses" or wins, then we will undoubtedly be disappointed. But if we have a more realistic "batting average mentality", then we can  avoid being upset or disempowered by situations and instead have a healthier perspective that it's just comes with the territory and is part of our  artistic  journey.

This is in no way to suggest lowering your standards of excellence, but just to keep a healthy perspective. You can remain committed to a goal or outcome but not attached to it.  If you are committed and it doesn't turn out, you are  left with your commitment and the possibility to take another action towards fulfilling on that commitment. If you are attached, making it mean something about you, then you will just left upset.

 I remember this from my Business School days in Service Management class:      
  Satisfaction =Perception - Expectation.

If your perception of the outcome is greater than your expectation you'll be satisfied.  Conversely, if you expected more than you perceive you got, you will be dissatisfied.   So if you expect 100%  from all your artistic endeavors,  it's unlikely that you will ever be satisfied. 

 So don't set yourself up for being upset. Be realistic. Take action. This time at bat you may strike out or get a hit or maybe even a home run.    You don't know till you try. What you do have control over is making the effort to get up to bat. And in the words of Winston Churchill, "Never, never, never give up".

1 comment:

  1. Pat, this is a great post. You're absolutely right about how we look at our accomplishments. We just have to keep getting up to bat and moving forward.