One of the greatest lies that people believe is that in the grand scheme of life they do not matter. Or they believe that what they choose to do, or not do, does not matter. Or both. Many are so doubtful of their identity that they gradually lose their purpose. What results is that many sit on the sidelines and became spectators of life instead of fulfilling their designed purpose that is meant for much more.
Commenting on the game of football over 50 years ago, Oklahoma Sooners’ Hall of Fame coach Bud Wilkinson astutely noted that the game comprised of 22 boys on the field badly in need of rest playing in front of 40,000 people badly in need of some exercise. Wilkinson’s wisdom speaks to how many engage in life: mere spectators of the action going on in the world. Much of this mindset is a product of the American culture that has gradually evolved in which we spend much of our time watching sports, television, and movies, devote hours in a day playing the latest video game, and consume many, many more on our computers and smart phone devices.
None of these habits are wrong nor a poor use of time, but rather can be essential to rest and rejuvenation if done in healthy practice. But done in unhealthy repetition results in us becoming part of a large audience instead of cultivating ourselves into an incredible performer. The byproduct is that we become more passionate about what others are doing and less passionate about ourselves. We roll off the couch, stretch from the gaming chair, and flip off the phone at the end of the day no more passionate about our purpose than we did at the beginning of the day.
Spectating results in the marriage where quality time with our spouse is lost and the connection broken. Spectating results in being is told what we should do, how we should believe, and the adoption of the values of those closest to us. Spectating results in the overwhelming feelings of shame, self-judgement, and defensiveness, or blaming others when life goes wrong, yet in reality we failed because we did not give our best effort. Spectating is becoming less passionate about our contribution at work, at our church, in our marriage, and as a parent.
One way to counter being a spectator and making yourself into a performer is through coaching. We were not meant to do life alone. No one becomes a great performer on their own but are coached in their craft until they can fully tap into their innate gifts and talents and fulfill their designed purpose. Whether its relationships, mental health, vocational calling, or matters of faith in God, all of us can use a little coaching. Want a better quality of marriage where you connect in a greater way with your spouse? Try coaching. Want to better understand your core beliefs, your values, your faith? Try coaching. Want to lose the sense of guilt and self-judgement when you have those bad days? Try coaching. Want to spend your days knowing they are being filled with meaning? Try coaching. You do not have to try coaching, but you do have to try being a performer if you want to stop being a spectator of life as it passes by. So, yeah, try coaching!