Today, over 50 million people will pick up a newspaper to read the latest entertainment gossip and world news. On a popular night, over 20 million of us will tune into the latest episode of Eastenders to see what is happening in their 30 minute slot. Millions of people will head over to Perez Hilton, a popular celebrity news blog, while hundreds of those will leave hate comments to people in the public eye for any number of ludicrous and irrelevant reasons. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of people will head out to nightclubs across the world and do nothing but ridicule others for their dancing, dress sense or any other mundane feature and joke about it with their friends. We’ll read inspirational books or watch inspiring movies like ‘Fight Club’ and it will literally have no impact on how we live our lives. Then…we’ll go to work and discuss all these things which only continues the never-ending cycle. This is spectator mode; this is living the life of a watcher, rather than a doer.
How can we read stories of people going from rags to riches and then doubt in ourselves that we could ever do the same? How can we dream of a certain career and simply never take any steps towards actually having it when instead we simply see others perform the role? I’m not saying checking up on world news (newspapers) is a bad thing, but if you notice yourself in any of these then it’s likely you’re living in spectator mode, rather than a mode of plan and action.
My Personal Story
I built my first website when I was 15, I would love to link to it so you guys can have a giggle but it seems like in the last month Lycos have started cancelling a lot of their services. At first, I simply built a site about computer tips and had a link to paypal where people could send me Â£1 for help with their PC’s. At the time I honestly thought it was going to make me rich, little did I know that I actually needed traffic to my website. From researching the likes of SEO, PPC and other website traffic generation ideas, I came across forums where people were showing how they made $10,000 daily
from their sites. There were 16 year old’s selling anime forums for over half a million dollars and countless other people sharing their success stories online in a variety of niches. What did I do?
I followed them, I observed them. I read their posts on forums to see how they got started. I did interviews with them and added them to my zero-subscriber blog. I followed them so much that I realised months had gone by and I hadn’t actually done much else with my internet time. I was so in awe and amazement of all these people making all this money that I couldn’t believe it. Despite seeing people a year older than me making enough money in a month for my family to live off for years, I didn’t take action. Now, of course, it’s a different story. I have over 30 domains, 10+ live websites and a lot of different projects that are making me money. I’m not sitting on webmaster forums all day learning how others are doing well and trying to replicate them, I’m taking what I know and applying it, each and every day. I now realise what I was doing at the time was living in total spectator mode
. I might have been working hard in other areas of my life such as college and athletics, but in terms of one of my main passions I just watched others being successful. And yes…every day I would talk about these amazing possibilities to others and I still wouldn’t be taking any personal action.
How to Get Out of Spectator Mode
We all have a spectator personal story
like this whether you know it right now or not. Whether you gossip about Madonna getting a divorce or you ridicule others for quitting their jobs and taking risks in this economy, we all suffer from this mode at one time or another. In actuality, some doses of spectator mode here and there aren’t a bad thing. For example, if I didn’t see that there was so much money to be made online by watching others then I wouldn’t have thought it was worth my time building websites. If I had never spoken to people taking big risks in their lives I would never have thought that I could do exactly the same thing; that risk taking and huge opportunity is possible for me and everyone else. However, sometimes we can get so immersed in spectator mode that it takes over our lifes. We never progress in our careers, our diet consists of junk-food and random meals, we’ve never written down a goal sheet and certainly don’t have an action plan. At times I have seen myself completely immersed in this and see friends on the same path. With that in mind, let’s look at how to get out of spectator mode… 1
) Realise you are in it
Just like the best way to rid yourself of negative emotions
is to notice you are having them, the best way to get out of spectator mode is to first realise you are in it. Ask yourself: When was the last time you made a big change in your life? Do you have goals and are you working towards them? Are you holding yourself back due to self-limiting beliefs
? If you have been living the same lifestyle for a long time but you are constantly dreaming of other things, then you are probably living in spectator mode. Watching other people follow their dreams while yours are just that…dreams. Once you know you are in spectator mode you can start to get out of it. 2) Decide what you want from life
If said this countless times and I’ll say it again, if you don’t know what you want from life you’re never going to progress and prove to yourself that you can be who you want to be and live the life you want to live. Instead of re-iterating what I’ve said previously, I think you should read at least one of these posts: 3) Take action
I’m going to do a dedicated post on this but here’s a quick question – do you realise how lucky we are? Do you realise that whatever we can dream, whether it be in health, wealth or relationships – we can have. One of my goals this year is to gain weight, I can do that. It’s simple, I have to eat more food, lift heavy weights and get enough rest. That’s it, I can achieve exactly what I want to achieve by taking action. What are you waiting for? What is so detrimental to your success that it is holding you back? Every Sunday I write down a goal plan
of what I want to achieve for the week along with a daily task list. If I miss a task or I’m not in the mood
to do it then I just ask myself “Do I really want the end result?” That is usually enough to keep me on track. You wanted more?
Why? That’s all it takes. If you think you need more information before you can change your life then that’s exactly why you’re living in this mode. I also recommend you read this excellent, to-the-point post by Seamus