/ˈkætlɪst/  [kat-l-ist]
1. Chemistry . a substance that causes or accelerates a chemical reaction without itself being affected.
2. something that causes activity between two or more persons or forces without itself being affected.
3. a person or thing that precipitates an event or change.
4. a person whose talk, enthusiasm, or energy causes others to be more friendly, enthusiastic, or energetic.
That’s how defines the word and I gotta say I dig it. Pretty obvious. Pretty simple.
What is a little tougher is putting it into practice because let’s face it … people don’t like to change and unfortunately the vast majority of examples of “catalysts” you may have seen are negative. You’ve seen the player who brings the entire team down when she throws a fit after a bad call goes against. The pitcher who gives “the look” at their fielders after errors have occured. Like a chemical reaction gone bad the team just explodes. The rest of the tournament might as well be phoned in. Their negative actions serve as a negative catalyst.
What is rare in our sport, or any sport for that matter, are those who are positive catalysts. Those that not only rise above the negative but bring others along. Often we tend to feel outnumbered and think “Why bother there is no way I can change the whole team?” Notice that the definition didn’t say that a catalyst had to change their entire team. It just said causes activity and change in two or more. That the person’s enthusiasm causes others to be more enthusiastic.
Chemistry is going to be taking place on ball fields all around this country …
Are you going to leave your mark on your team this year, or allow them to leave their mark on you?
Are you going to succumb to the negative catalysts on the team or are you going to positively impact at least a few others?
Drive the change you know needs to occur. Be the CATALYST.

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