You can do it. You can move mountains. You are only limited by your mind.
I guess you’ve heard those statements before, right?
Yep, you have.
These are statements that motivational speakers love telling us. I used to love listening to motivational speakers until I realised something…. Let’s talk about that.
So here’s how it starts. You’re a young person…usually in your teenage years. You’re still discovering how life works. And then you stumble across a video, radio commercial or something that catches your attention immediately.
It will be something like “Learn how to make a MILLION DOLLARS!”. Or “Learn the top five habits that all millionaires use.”
That catchy headline obviously grabs your attention and makes you think about it.
You end up doing your research, and that’s where the rabbit hole begins.
You start by watching 1 YouTube video about how millionaires wake up everyday at 5:00 AM and exercise for about an hour. And then you learn about how old millionaires read one book every single week. And then you read some other crazy thing about millionaires (There’s always at least one crazy, totally untrue fact. I have no idea why).
Feeling motivated, you try to copy this. You wake up at 5:00. You start exercising. You start reading books and you start doing everything that you watched from the video about what millionaires too.
It obviously doesn’t work and you quickly realise this. So what do you do? You go back to the video and skip to the part where they recommended books to read. “Let me read some books” you say to yourself. You end up thinking that maybe you were doing it wrong and by getting a bit of additional research you’ll be able to live like a millionaire
So we start to read motivational books and these motivational books live is so pumped up. After reading these books, you feel like you’re just gonna run up a mountain and…. I don’t know. Do something. Something big.
You start to make radical changes to your routine. You start to wake up early, eat food that is really horrible because you know, all millionaires eat super nutritious things. You know the “fact” that when people become millionaires, their taste buds just disappear. They become super self-disciplined, organic loving superhuman beings. You obviously try to copy that. And it doesn’t work.
Then one day, the revelation is shown to you. You realise that these motivational speakers actually make money by teaching us how to become millionaires, they become millionaires by teaching us how to become millionaires. After doing even more research, you realise that the self-development industry is a billion-dollar industry. And you realise that most of these people who call themselves gurus are nothing but frauds.
They know how much people want to improve. They know that people are governed by emotions. No-one wants to be helpless. People want to get out of help this situation. They prey on the emotions of fear that most people have (because they usually feel helpless in their situations) and then they sell ridiculous courses at ridiculous prices to those people. They also sell ridiculous books filled with ridiculous things that are obviously impractical.
Here’s my favourite example:
You shouldn’t sleep for more than 4 hours. You should spend your time starting businesses and going after high risk ventures and investments.
#1 It’s very unhealthy for an adult to sleep for 4 hours for extended periods of time. The decisions you end up making will be greatly affected by your lack of sleep.
#2 Starting a business isn’t as easy as most people think.
Here are 3 really difficult problems associated with starting a business.
1: You need to get customers.
2: The customers you eventually get after going through a painstaking customer acquisition process need to pay you money.
3: Businesses involve dealing with other people. People don’t always use their brains. Believe it or not!
And you only realise that. After either spending a lot of time or having spent a lot of time reading or watching the material, or after having spent largest money going through their courses.
So, life then shows you what you really need. What you need are practical things. Practical ideas. Don’t listen to people who tell you to start businesses. They don’t have a clue. Instead, look for people who tell you the mistakes they have made, the things they got right as well as other hints and tips.
Here are a few podcasts that I use to get practical ideas, practical insights and stuff that I can actually use in my life.
- My first million by Shaan Puri and Sam Parr
- We study Billionaires – The Investor’s Podcast Network
- Detail Therapy by Amy Landino
- Redefining Wealth by Patrice Washington
In addition, I would recommend that you look for podcasts that interview people who are successful by whatever metrics you use to define success. If you love dogs, look for people who have successfully bred dogs. If you are a fitness enthusiast, look for people who have managed to keep fit for a reasonable period of time. The list goes on.
Thank you so much for reading. It’s time to delete those motivational videos, books and podcasts!
See you next week Wednesday.