“No one cares how much you know, until they know how much you care.” – Theodore Roosevelt
Many of today’s experts and gurus forget this.
It doesn’t matter how much they know. . .if you feel uncomfortable after watching their video.
It doesn’t matter what credentials follow their names. . .if they leave you feeling less than or lacking in any way.
And it absolutely doesn’t matter how many testimonials, followers, and subscribers they have if their offer just doesn’t feel good.
The promises and guarantees make no difference unless YOU know – and feel in your gut – that making a difference for YOU was their primary goal.
“There is no point in going into a business unless you can make a radical difference in other people’s lives.” – Richard Branson
It’s easy to look to the Internet gurus and marketers, but while they are definitely guilty of this practice they’re most assuredly not the only ones doing it.
I’m talking about those long-winded emails that start by scaring the crap out of you. Then, they wrap up with a save-the-day, “let me tell you how it’s done” solution and pressure to buy their new shiny product.
I hate this as much as one-size-fits-all pantyhose!
Because the truth is. . .
One size? NEVER, EVER fits all.
And one solution never applies to life and business (doesn’t matter if we’re talking stockings, marketing or business building!)
There’s never just one solution, and the experts who try to convince you that there is have themselves and their self interests front and centre. Not yours.
RUN away from them as fast as you can, but only after you’ve gone back to their site to unsubscribe!
Truth is they don’t have the solution, nor do they have your interests in mind.
How do I know? They wouldn’t still be using these fear based, angst ridden tactics.
They are out to sell, which in and of itself is not the problem.
It’s that they don’t mind stretching the truth to do so.
Coaches do this too. I cringe every time I see it and it makes me wonder. . .
Does anyone tell the truth anymore?
The realm of personal development and human potential is not exempt. There are many coaches and consultants who’ve bought their own PR. They’ve forgotten the WHY that had them pursue a career that’s all about helping people.
They’ve lost touch with humanity, and that you are unique and worthy of their respect.
It’s up to you to be on the look out for anything that hits you like a fear Taser.
For that’s how they do it, they speak directly to your lizard brain – yes, dear ol’ Lizzie – and its desire for security.
But this can cost you a whole lotta time, energy and money, while the promised solution never materializes.
I’ve learned a few things over the years. I too have been burnt by the experts, both as a paying customer as well as a partner in a long ago project.
I was lured by assurance in the first scenario, and flattery and attention in the second. Just like you, I fell for it.
Here’s the thing…
When you keep going back for more, keep buying into the hype, then you do yourself a great disservice.
Because the experts (A-Listers, gurus, et al.) are not going to stop.
It’s up to you be responsible for your own experience.
It’s up to you to do your due diligence rather than following the herd like a blindfolded sheep.
Here are a few of the tips I learned along the way.
5 Tips to Sidestep the BS about One-Size-Fits-All
1. Avoid the ubiquitous blueprint.
Blueprints, templates, roadmaps. . .they all work to guide you. That part is true.
Stop believing they are THE answer to what ails you.
Whether it’s a search for happiness or playing a bigger game in your business, you’ve got to find YOUR way. That doesn’t mean there aren’t people and tools to help you out; just beware of the rose-coloured glasses the experts hand out. Your values are a much better guide than their blueprint!
“Begin each day with the blueprint of your deepest values FIRMLY in mind then when challenges come, make decisions BASED on those values.” – Steven Covey
2. Ask questions!
Just because the person making the offer is well known, doesn’t mean you can’t ask them questions. Sit down and get clear on what you want to know that’s not clear in their offer.
Ask about experience, success stories, personal experience. You have a right to know these things if you’re going to be shelling out major cash.
“He who knows all the answers has not been asked all the questions.” – Confucious
3. Trust your gut.
The lizard brain rules your head, so go back to your gut. It is the fastest, best way to check out things out.
Consider the offer and then get still. Close your eyes and notice what’s going on in your body – it doesn’t lie. When I think back to the times I’ve not done this, the cost has been greater than I’d like to acknowledge.
“If your skin is crawling, pay attention. If something doesn’t feel right, pay attention. If the hairs on the back of your neck prickle, if your gut clenches up, if a wave of wrongness washes over you, if your heart starts beating faster, pay, pay, pay attention.” – Inga Muscio
4. Talk to their people.
Check out the expert’s testimonials. Ask to connect with 1 or 2 of them and ask questions. Check out their websites if available and see for yourself.
Over the years I’ve had potential clients ask for this and I’m always happy to connect them with a couple of clients (both current and former). They are my not-so-secret weapon and my business has thrived because of these referrals and my willingness to be transparent.
“All teachings are mere references. The true experience is living your own life.” – Deng Ming-Dao
5. S L O W down.
It’s not a race, there is no hurry, and there’s nowhere to get to.
Breathe, get clear, take your time. And if you’re in business, consider the concept of slow marketing.
“Slow down you’re doing fine. You can’t be everything you want to be before your time.” – Billy Joel
This post is part of the monthly Word Carnivals, a round-up of small-biz bloggers writing on a common theme.
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