Inside The Mind of A MiLB Catcher
Goal setting is a way of bringing the future into the present so you can TAKE ACTION NOW. “Take action now” is in all caps because for me those are the most important three words to goal setting that got me to where I am today.
An introduction on me and how my life took action with goal setting; my name is Steven Leonard and I am currently a catcher in the Colorado Rockies organization. Growing up the love of baseball was instilled in me, the same love I have for the game today. I grew up in Monument, Colorado where my mom first taught me the game of baseball. Yes my mom, and she still throws me batting practice with both arms to this day. I excelled at baseball at a young age, always playing two to three age groups above mine. As I got into high school I knew on the diamond was where my future would be. Coming out of high school as an all conference all state player I had high expectations for myself in my freshmen year at Iowa Western Community College. Coach Marc Rardin said, “We are going to win a national championship” in the first meeting on the first day. That’s when I was first introduced to goal setting and wow it was set high. The team and I worked our tails off all year towards this goal. On that great Saturday night at the JUCO world series in 2012, that goal became reality.
The next step in my baseball journey was my commitment to Campbell University. I went in with the team goal of winning a Big South championship, not really any personal goals. Just like at Iowa Western we would work our tails off and achieve that goal. Going into my third year of college baseball I took a step back and asked myself what goals am I setting for myself, what are my standards to live by and work toward. I set out to find those goals and I set them very high. I sat down before the season and wrote on a piece of paper in bold my goals. They were hit over .300, steal 30 bases, be a team leader, Big South championship and lastly in the largest font MLB DRAFT. With my first real goal setting I was shooting high but very attainable. I posted these goals right next to my door in my apartment so I would see them every morning when I woke up and every night before I went to sleep. It would be the first and last thing on my mind every day. That year I would go on to hit .315, steal 30 bases, lead the team as a captain, and I was drafted by the Colorado Rockies as the 2nd pick of the 23rd round in the MLB draft.
When I look back on it seeing those goals every day gave me something to look ahead to and chase down, that was my way of “taking action now.” Now stepping into the present time goal setting has only become a larger and larger part of my game. Going into the off season I repeat what I did in college with writing out my goals to see every day, I even posted it as the background on my phone. There will always be goals to set in your life, on or off the field goals can always keep you on track. Goal setting helps me and can help you see your future in vivid color. When you create your future all you have to do is live into it. That is what very successful people do. If I had any advice for any young players coming up it would be to start goal setting now. Set them for the day, the month, the year, even five or ten years down the road. This will help create a path you can then live into. Make your goals something you have to really work for but that are attainable at the same time. Map out where you want to be now and in the future and focus on that so you can live into your own dream like I am living into mine today.
TAKE ACTION NOW!
- Steven Leonard