How often have you bought yet another book or audio program or product that promises to revolutionize your life?
How often have you taken a seminar or class or course that sounds like the solution to all your problems?
How often has it worked?
We’d all like a magic-bullet solution to our problems. Whether you’re trying to lose weight, make more money, or finally get organized, there’s no shame in wishing it was easy.
Sadly, it usually isn’t. (It might well be simple – which I’ll come to later in this post – but that’s not the same as easy.)
Here’s why there’s no magic system:
Marketers Don’t Have Your Best Interests at Heart
The people who create ads are in the business of selling. The vast majority of the time, they care about their profit margin, not about your best interests.
That means that a lot of books, products, and courses get over-hyped. Whether it’s a best-selling self-help book or a line of diet pills, it’s almost certainly being made to sound far more effective than it really is.
Marketers use all sorts of tricks to convince you that, this time, the “miracle solution” really is just that. They might have testimonials from satisfied customers … but you don’t know how many people weren’t satisfied, or even if these testimonials are fake. They may show misleading photos: the “before” and “after” photos for weight loss products are a classic example. In some cases, they may tell outright lies.
In almost every case, you need to remember that…
Real Change Takes Work
You won’t become thin, rich, and organized overnight. If you want to make serious progress in your life, it’s going to take real work.
I know this might sound obvious, but you can’t simply read a book or take a class and miraculously experience the benefits: you have to actually put the advice into action. If you’re like most people, you’ll find yourself reading book after book or taking class after class without really doinganything.
(And it’s not your fault. If you were being sold on some quick-fix solution only to find it’s going to require a ton of work, you’re hardly to be blamed for finding it a tough proposition.)
If you genuinely want to change your life, you have to be willing to work for it.
The good news is that…
Simple Solutions Are Often the Best
Sometimes, you’ll be convinced that your real problem is that you’ve just not found the right solution yet.
You’ll often see this tendency manipulated by the dieting industry: clearly, you’re not losing weight because you’re not eating the right foods for your blood type, or you’re combining the wrong foods, or you’re eating carbs after 5pm…
Unfortunately, the real reason you’re not losing weight is almost certainly because you’re eating too much and exercising too little. Sure, a radical new diet plan might help, but only because it restricts the number of calories you’re eating.
The same applies to almost any area of your life. Need to get out of debt? Start spending less. Need to be more organized? Write a to-do list. Need to declutter your house? Just get on with it.
Of course, there are plenty of great books, useful products and insightful courses that can help you towards your goals. The trick, though, is to look for those that don’t promise to be a magic solution. Trust the authors and sales people who let you know, upfront, that you’re going to need to do some work: they’ll be able to show you how and help you along the path.
Before you buy more books or courses or exercise equipment, try using the ones you’ve already got. Even if they’re not 100% perfect for your situation, use what you can. You’ll make much faster progress than if you forked out for something new – and you’ll have more money in your pocket.