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OPINION: Here’s to you, Joe DiMaggio, for showing us how it’s done

American baseball player Joe DiMaggio (1914 - 1999) hits out. Original Publication: People Disc - HC0062 (Photo by Keystone/Getty Images)

This is an editorial. An editorial, like a news article, is based on fact but also shares opinions. The opinions expressed here are solely those of the author and are not associated with our newsroom.

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Joe DiMaggio is widely considered one of the greatest baseball players of all time. Nicknamed “Joltin’ Joe,” DiMaggio played his entire 13-year career for the New York Yankees.

Everything he did was a was a jolt. He was always just sacrificing his body, diving for the ball, diving into the stands, sliding into third base.

What made Joe DiMaggio so amazing

The thing that was most amazing about Joe DiMaggio was the fact that he did it regardless of what the score was or who they were playing. It didn’t matter if the Yankees were playing the last place team and they were winning by a whole bunch of runs.

He gave that Joltin’ Joe 125% effort on every play, every time, every day, every inning and every at-bat. 

A reporter once asked him, “Why work so hard in a game when you’re winning 10 to nothing? It’s the ninth inning, and you’re diving into the stands to catch a foul ball.”

He would always respond by saying, “I give that kind of hustle because there is always someone in the stands, some kid in the stands, who is seeing me play for the first time or someone who may be seeing me for the only time or for the last time. I owe them my best effort.”

Another great example

Years ago, when I was doing business consulting and speaking at a lot of seminars, my friend and mentor, Denis Waitley spoke all over the world. I heard him tell the same stories and share the same examples and the same principles hundreds of times. It amazed me that he could always do it with such passion, with such energy, with such effort that everybody listening felt he spoke directly to them.

How do you sustain that? I asked him. I mean you’re speaking in a different city, sometimes you’re speaking in a different country every day and traveling in between.

“Just remember,” he said, “for somebody in the audience, it’s the first time. It’s the first time they’ve heard it or it may be the right time for them to hear it. And they deserve my best effort.”

Now it’s your turn

If we treated our relationships with each other with the same kind of energy and commitment as Joe DiMaggio and Denis Waitley, the world would benefit. It would be a different place. Because the reality is, everybody we interact with deserves our best effort.

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