A lot of self-help gurus start out by declaring that “many” of the people who come to them are looking for a “quick fix.” 

They decry what they label a superficial approach to personal development that they say many of their prospective clients take. 

I’m…not sure who these people are working with. 

Because I have YET to meet someone interested in personal development who has assumed it was going to be quick or easy. 

To the contrary, most of the people I’ve met who are interested in personal development, or who have sought my input on their journey, have been very prepared to buckle down and work— and, for the most part, very receptive to my approach and interventions, even when they’ve been difficult. 

Yet, you see it over and over again in the self-help community: gurus proclaiming that if you’re one of these people who expects a quick fix, than they’re NOT THE GURU FOR YOU!

You know what I think? 

I think these gurus are making it up. 

I don’t think they run into all that many people who think that personal growth is about “quick fixes.” 

I think these gurus PRETEND that’s the case, because they want to brand themselves as the “REAL DEAL,” and by implication they want to band their competition as peddlers of “quick fixes.” 

Over and over again, you see this nonsense from the self-help industry. 

One guru in particular loves to recount imaginary interactions with clients where he just BLOWS THEIR MINDS by telling them that MONEY ISN’T EVERYTHING; or that they’ll have to make some SACRIFICES in order to succeed; or some other nonsense that they (the guru) thinks makes them sound deep and profound. 

Give me a break. 

One of the things I love about the self-help community is that it is filled with seekers who are open and curious and passionate about personal development. 

One of the things I hate about the self-help INDUSTRY (as opposed to the COMMUNITY) is that so many wannabe gurus take such a condescending approach to their potential clients. 

If you’re reading my page, it is unlikely that I am smarter than you. 

It is unlikely that I am telling you anything you don’t already know. 

It is probably the case that you ARE smart, motivated, and authentic. 

And you don’t need me, or anyone else, talking down to you. 

Do not put up with anyone talking down to you, who then turns around and asks you to pay them money to help improve your life. 

One of the huge parts of self-help and recovery is remembering who you are and what your strengths are. 

You don’t need to be reminded of of beaten over the head with your limitations or mistakes— by me or by anyone else. 

Notice whether a professional starts out from a place of respecting and empowering you…or telling you all about how you’re doing it wrong. 

You can’t learn to respect yourself from someone who doesn’t respect you. 

That’s true in self-help, it’s true in recovery, it’s true in therapy, it’s true in relationships. 

It’s true in life. 

One thought on “Do NOT let your self-help guru talk down to you.

  1. It’s my background… “fixed” is a euphemism for “spayed or neutered”. This gave me a good laugh. I do agree with what you say, though. There are some weird advertisements showing up now and then, and I feel sad for those vulnerable people who are swayed by them.


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