Self-Help Can Become No Help At All If You’re Not Careful
Your personal development time is critical to your success.
The right self-help book, course, or audio can be a powerful tool to help guide people.
Many people can say they’ve experienced transformation because they did the personal development and then put the information to use right away.
People have gone from nervous, shy, and lacking in confidence to become calm, outgoing, and confident in their ability to do things.
This is where a self-help book or audio works very well.
But it can also be argued that, like anything else taken too far, self-help can be harmful.
There is so much self-help literature out there now and so much advice on how we can become better versions of who we are. Is it helpful?
Is it constructive? Or is it harmful?
Why Self-Help Can Be Damaging
Many, many people will attest to having been positively influenced by self-help books and videos. And then there are those who have been damaged by them.
The most common way the damage can occur is when the self-help book or video or course is used as a delay tactic.
This is when people use self-help as a way to avoid actually doing the work to improve themselves.
In other words: people will buy a self-help book, watch a few videos or audio recordings, purchase a course and then will instantly feel as though they’re making good progress toward being a better version of themselves.
They think they’ve made the effort by buying the book after all: so they can pat themselves on the back and keep on reading.
And then they buy the next book. And the corresponding course. And then the videos. And then the next book.
And they feel great about themselves except they haven’t actually changed anything.
Self-help is destructive when it is used as a delay tactic.
Know Who to Trust
The other issue is that self-help can be negative because you aren’t getting the right information or it’s coming from an unqualified person.
The good thing about the internet is that anyone and everyone can contribute. The bad thing about the internet is that anyone and everyone can contribute.
There is a lot of incentive for people to appear as experts to get visitors to their sites and then earn cash from the number of visitors.
The problem is that many people follow advice that is based on zero evidence and that is offered by someone who has no authority or credibility to offer it.
For instance, it’s common knowledge that visualizing your goal can help you achieve it. What isn’t common knowledge is that this only works if it’s done correctly. Which means there is a right way and a wrong way to visualize.
The lesson here is simple: question what you read then as you try it in your life decide if it’s really working for you.
But be sure to apply what you learned to your life. That’s probably the most important part.
Once you’ve applied it to your life, then re-evaluate it to decide if it’s really working, or if you need to tweak something, or even if you might need to learn more.
If it doesn’t make sense, or if it isn’t working for you, or if you’re not sure… then seek out someone who has credibility by asking for recommendations from other people that you trust.
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By Lynn Huber
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