Today I had a nice interaction on a Facebook business group I’m newly active in. A member had posted a question about “MasterMind Groups” and since I had recently posted on the topic, I shared my post “How to Start a MasterMind Group” and offered to email anyone the link to the MasterMind Meeting Template via a Google Document (because really, PDFs can be a pain if you really want to use them now, right?).
Anyway, someone on the comment thread friended me right away and requested the Google doc, and I was happy to share it.
We exchanged a few messages, and she said she was lurking for over a year, and finally this post, and my comment and offer inspired her to act.
I’m so glad it did.
You never know who you’re going to affect when you offer a bit of encouragement and support. You could inspire someone on to starting a business, getting healthy and fit, improving their relationships, or becoming a better human being.
You might even be able to do that by sharing some of the things you’re ashamed of.
For example, although many know me for being health & fitness oriented, experienced in business, and a mostly nice and positive person, for years I lived in what I called my “Shadow Land.” I was in a dark place, drinking too much, smoking up to a pack of cigarettes a day, with no accountability. I had a lot of dreams in my head, but when it came time for action, I was weak and let my bad behaviors rule my life. Not by active choice, but rather by laziness and depression.
The reason I share that is because I’m betting that many people have a similar experience. Perhaps a divorce kicked your butt. Or you got laid off and had to take a humbling job. Whatever it was, shit happens, and you keep going. Sometimes it takes longer than you thought to get to where you want to be.
Meanwhile, during my time in the Shadow Land, I was consuming positive blogs, like Smart Passive Income, the Four Hour Work Week Blog, and some marketing blogs like GrowthHackers.com and other marketing and sales blogs. I listened to a lot of podcasts. From health related podcasts, like Rich Roll, to general personal development subjects like Lewis Howe’s School of Greatness. I listened to a lot of marketing podcasts, like Michael Hyatt and Amy Porterfied and Pat Flynn’s Smart Passive income. I did this for years.
I was drifting and lurking because I hadn’t found my calling. Or more like I hadn’t decided on my choosing. (Read my exercise on How to Find Your Calling and Choose a Niche) So I lurked. And worked at my j.o.b.
I knew it would turn for me when I was ready. But the truth is, you’re ready when you say you’re ready. For most really big things in life; major moves, taking a trip, having a child, there’s always anxiety before you start… you procrastinate, you put it off for when you’re ready. You say: “When I have $5k saved up, I’ll start.” That’s fear talking.
Yes, I want to build a great blog full of actionable resources. Yes I want to build a great podcast which truly helps people become better human beings, for themselves, their families, and as leaders and citizens of the world. And all that lurking fueled my fire.
However, lurking comes with a heavy price.
As I lurked, I was not building the muscles I needed to develop to write consistently.
As I lurked, I was not building the testing portfolio to increase my opt-in rates and build my email list.
As I lurked, I was not refining my copy writing skills.
As I lurked, I was not building or engaging my social network on Twitter or Instagram.
And mostly, as I lurked, I hurt my spirit because I was consuming vs. creating.
I have forgiven myself. I humbly recognize that I was feeding behaviors that were unhealthy, and I needed to change my behaviors and habits to be congruent with my values.
Finally, there’s the cash cost of lurking. In economics, we call it “opportunity cost.” What if I had started four years ago? I could have practiced the skills, learned lessons, tested hypotheses, made refinements, those mistakes, and invested hours in learning how to be a more effective marketer and teacher. Perhaps I could have earned five, then six figures a year.
It’s not unheard of.
Well, if you’re like me, and you are no longer a lurker, take action today on something. Maybe it’s registering your domain. Or setting up hosting with HostGator. Or installing WordPress on your site. Writing your first post. Or heck, even just posting on a Facebook group you’re involved with asking for help on something.
Do something now.
And if you don’t know what to do, hit me up and let’s have a conversation.