I got officially into the world of self-development back in 2012. Two years prior to that, I started my own journey into getting to know myself again. Skip forward three years, and I was learning to love myself, again. So my five year anniversary is fast approaching, to celebrate when I started to share with and inspire people on the world wide web. Perhaps I will be gifting myself with something wooden!
Going back to self-development, or, as I prefer to categorise it, self-exploration. I was always excited to share the tools that not only helped me approach this life, but I was sure would help others. Was that not amazing? Yes, I was full of enthusiasm!
I can also recall during those early days the excitement every time I discovered a new approach to deal with an everyday matter. I wanted to share it. Sometimes I discovered new ways and at other times things that weren’t so unique – just new spins on old theories. I would write about them in my blog posts or guest articles.
Then there was social media, which was meant to be a platform to not only engage socially, but also a tool to market expertise. So a share would appear on my timeline or Facebook business page. Was it not loving to share?
Fast forward to the present day, where I have started to notice a trend on Facebook timeline: the rise of the shouting life coaches, or titled self-help gurus. Here are some examples of the tone they take: “Why do you think you’re not over there?” “You are not over there because you’re not following these prescribed steps!” “Come on, what’s stopping you?”
Did you not notice in the previous statements how it felt to read that exclamation mark, as the speaker came across as direct, perhaps even pushy? Yes, we may need a nudge at times, as we are creatures of comfort. But come on. Do you like people to shout at you? Trying to tell you what YOU should be doing? Personally, I don’t like the shouting-fest. There are always better ways of expressing oneself.
What is the best way of approaching self-help?
We all have different ways of learning, picking up stuff, and applying it to our everyday lives. But before we go there, the first step is that we need to be ready to hear a message or reminder.
Like my mother always say, “nothing happens before its time.” The solution is always there, waiting for us. Before that moment, we will experience cycles where we seem to arrive at a point of frustration, time and again.
Tell me! Has this happened to you in relationships, where you have told yourself “never again”? Then you may have had a change of heart and forgotten about that promise to not overdo it. Alcohol is a good example.
Learn from example.
We live what we learn. For example, we really do connect to real-life stories. It makes it much easier to relate with human feelings – the “feel good.”
My theory is that some of those people who are “shouting” about how you should be living are in fact feeling the need to talk to themselves. The tools that they are pushing on you about how you should feel and how you should be more of your awesome self are ideas they need to share.
These “shouting coaches” want to work stuff out. The need that they feel to shout and push their theories out there is more related to them playing the Archetype of the Fixer. They want to help people, when first they need to help themselves. Maybe they have the belief that this concept is selfish – that is often misconstrued – to take care of themselves first.
Of course, that is wrong, but you can feel free to not resonate with the former.
“Remember that a teacher is a guide”
We have options when deciding whether we want to listen to some discovery or lesson, or if we are going to apply it. Ultimately, it is not to the responsibility of the coach to push this choice on another person. The teacher’s job is to point and show a way, not say, “that is the only way for you.” This was so eloquently described by the late Bruce Lee:
“A teacher is never a giver of “truth”; he is a guide, a pointer to the truth.”
Freedom to feel and resonate.
The fact is we have free will to choose what we believe in and what resonates with us. Our feelings and emotions are valid. Our intuition is a good guide, a compass. This also includes our inner child, who may at times seem naïve. But this part of ourselves is always honest, and quite articulate at expressing its wants. So be aware of any teacher who is telling you, to suppress the inner child.
Overall, social media, like the other parts of the internet, gives us access to great resources and people who can support us. We do need to pay attention to the delivery, and the person’s intentions. Look at the place they’re coming from, as in the illustration where we looked at the “Fixer” Archetype. And, of course, when you hear a loud noise, you can mute it.
What are you going to do when you next hear the shouting life coach?