The Controllables

In Blog, Hustle Podcast by Eric ByrnesLeave a Comment

After getting traded twice in a 2-week period then struggling mightily in the 2nd half of the 2005 season, I got a call from Karl Kuehl, who I worked with when he was the mental performance coach for the A’s, saying he wanted to meet…

“Eric… We have a problem.  You are underperforming and not reaching near your full potential… Why?”

I responded with the fact that my playing time in Oakland was grossly inconsistent, and then, I was traded twice in a 2 week period… Oh yea, and the manager in Baltimore, Lee Mazzilli, who was my #1 fan and personally responsible for trading for me, got fired just 10 days after I became an Oriole…

Karl then asked the waitress for a napkin and told me to write all the things down that were within my control on one side and all the things that were not on the other…


  • Attitude
  • Effort
  • Response
  • Preparation
  • Routine
  • Execution process
  • Recovery
  • Commitment to relationships
  • Spirituality


  • External Events
  • Other people’s actions
  • Other people’s reactions
  • Feelings from our own emotions
  • Opponents skill set
  • Umpires
  • Weather
  • Bad hop
  • Nail in the road
  • Fati

Obviously, the two main things that we control in our lives is our attitude and our effort.

The question now becomes what within our everyday lives is within our controllable power and stems from A & E, and what is not?

Human Crash Test Dummy Solution:

In order to respond appropriately to any and all of life’s shit show happenings, we must wake the f*ck up and quit being such egocentric nut jobs that believe we have control of all of the external events happening in our lives.

Go Hard Task:

Grab a blank piece of paper and write down all of the things that are in your control on one side, then flip that sheet of paper over and list 10 things that are outside of your control (the more personal to your life the better).