Today is June 11 and the Navigate the Chaos question to consider is “how often do you find fault?” Author Henry David Thoreau wrote “However mean your life is, meet it and live it; do not shun it and call it hard names. It is not so bad as you are. It looks poorest when you are richest. The faultfinder will find faults even in paradise. Love your life, poor as it is.”
As you leverage your mind, body, and spirit to navigate the chaos and translate one dream after another into reality, consider spending time assessing your level of self-awareness when it comes to finding fault. There are plenty of external events, people, and even health issues that prevent us from navigating the chaos, if we let them.
If we find fault, make excuses, or blame someone or something, it will be difficult to translate any dream into reality. When you nurture self-love you empower yourself to realize that there are indeed many people who had reasons to find fault yet they never let anything stand in their way of achieving their dream. Today’s reflection involves the backstory of a professional baseball player who had plenty of reasons to find fault; but he never did.
Jameson Lee Taillon did not find fault as he traveled his path of navigating the chaos. Taillon is a Canadian American professional baseball pitcher for the Pittsburgh Pirates of Major League Baseball (MLB). Drafted by the Pirates as the second overall pick in the 2010 MLB draft, Jameson is a man of routines, most of them based on the notion that control creates results. One of them involves getting to the ballpark every day as early as possible.
"That way," he says, "the chaos comes to me instead of me walking into the chaos." Taillon’s journey has been chaotic as he missed the 2014 season after Tommy John surgery and 2015 after hernia surgery. But in 2017 something happened in his life that illustrated how control has its limits and chaos has a mind of its own.
On May 2, 2017, Taillon felt a lump on his left testicle. After tests confirmed testicular cancer, he needed surgery. Six days later, he underwent a one-hour surgery to remove his left testicle. Several days later, on May 7, 2017, he posted the following statement on his Twitter account:
“When I was a kid, I spent countless numbers of hours dreaming of being a Major League Pitcher. Always determined (borderline obsessed) with working hard to make it, I never doubted myself. However, as a naïve little guy, I never realized that each person has a different path and journey along their way to accomplish their goals. Tommy John Surgery, Sports Hernia Surgery, a 105-mph line drive off of my hard head, and this most recent discovery are just a few of the stops along the way. They have all just added fuel to my burning fire and inspired me to become even better. I vowed to use every setback as an opportunity for growth. Today I lost a piece of my 'Manhood.' But today I am feeling like more of a man than I ever have. My journey has not been the smoothest. But it is my journey, and I wouldn't change it for anything. Thank you to my family, girlfriend, teammates, doctors, Pirates fans, and the entire Pirates organization for the support.”
The Testicular Cancer Awareness Foundation states that exertion is off-limits for up to four weeks after surgery. In less than three weeks, Jameson was pitching in a minor league rehab game. As of 2019 he was cancer-free. Taillon would go on to play with the Pirates until 2019 when he was traded to the New York Yankees. On December 19, 2022, Taillon signed a four-year deal with the Chicago Cubs.
Fellow professional baseball player and hall of famer Casey Stengel said “All blame is a waste of time. No matter how much fault you find with another, and regardless of how much you blame him, it will not change you. The only thing blame does is to keep the focus off you when you are looking for reasons to explain your unhappiness or frustration. Regardless of how much you blame him you will not succeed in changing whatever it is about you that is making you unhappy.”
How often do you feel as though your life is mean?
How often do you shun life and call it hard names?
How often do you find fault even in good times?
How often do you love your life, even in times of despair?
How often do you blame someone or something for your lot in life?
If you do blame someone or something for your lot in life have you found that to be helpful in navigating the chaos?
Do you really want to leverage your mind, body, and spirit to find fault with someone or something?
How much time are you wasting by finding fault?
If your journey is not the smoothest, can you still find a way to move forward like Taillon did?
Can you still demonstrate an appreciation for those who supported you as you leverage your mind, body, and spirit to navigate the chaos?
Has blaming someone or finding fault changed you for the better in any way or helped you translate your dreams into reality?