How many different motivational speakers and life coaches are in the world today? Approximately a brazillion.
How many of them actually have something meaningful to say for your life?
Maybe 5 or 6.
Who are they?
Who knows. Those 5 or 6 will be different for everyone, and will touch everyone in a different way, at different times of their lives, impacting different spheres of experience: relationships, health, spirituality, career, finance, hobbies & play, etc.
I don’t know who they are, but I guarantee you they all have some 7 steps to success and happiness.
Their own flavor of 13 tips for living a better life.
A “27-point Foolproof Path to Fabulousness!”
Do they work?
For the right people
At the right time.
But for you?
You want my advice? Just be a better person.
I was reading Reddit and came across this nugget of self-hate. [https://www.reddit.com/r/exredpill/comments/dqgyfr/i_dont_know_what_to_do_anymore/] I’m not going to quote it, but it’s basically some guy in his early 20s complaining that he doesn’t know how other people do it. Everyone else seems to be better than him, and he wonders why.
How are they better people than him?
I offered my (admittedly unsolicited) advice with 5 steps to being a better person. I will, however, quote myself, because I think it’s worthwhile to have the discussion.
What to do? Stop reading “self-help” books that are written to exploit your addiction to “self-improvement”. The industry only exists to convince you that you’re going to get better if you just buy their next new source of tips and tricks. In reality, they want to sell you more books because, well, they don’t sell you any more books if you actually, you know, HELP YOURSELF to get better. You want 5 simple steps? Here, here’s 5 steps to becoming a better person:
- Read Marcus Aurelius, Meditations. It’s not a self-help book, but it is about being good with yourself.
- Go for a walk an hour a day, every day, for a year. No music, no audiobook, but just think.
- Write in a journal, not on the internet. Nobody here cares about you. you are the only one who does, so you are the only one who needs to know your thoughts.
- Stop smoking dope and drinking alcohol. You’re poisoning yourself and using intoxication to mask your real feelings.
- Stop swearing. It’s laziness. Put in the mental effort to think of a real insult. Swearing is simple, so it’s the mark of a simpleton. Be better than that.
So that’s my advice. But again, it’s “5 Steps to Being A Better Person”. And I realized, he doesn’t need 5 steps.
He doesn’t even need 3.
He, and everyone else, just needs ONE STEP to become a better person.
Are you ready?
It’s pretty radical an idea.
One that might revolutionize the self-help industry.
Here it is:
BEING A BETTER PERSON, STEP #1:
BE A BETTER PERSON
Don’t like who you are?
Don’t like your attitude?
Don’t like your emotions?
Don’t like your anger?
Recognize that you are choosing, every moment of every day, what you are going to do with that moment and that day.
If you don’t like what you’ve chosen, choose differently.
Be a better person.
I’m not the only one saying this. Here’s the Holstee Manifesto, which says a lot of the same stuff, in a pretty picture:
Just be that better person.
No, it’s not easy.
It’s not laid out in 5, or 17, or 49 “simple” steps. Those specific steps might have worked for them. They might have worked, somewhat, for others around the world. But I’m 99.9% confident they won’t work for you.
It’s not that simple.
Because it can’t be.
My 5 steps don’t apply to you. They can’t. It’s impossible.
I don’t know what you want, where you’re starting from, and what you’re willing to put in to get there.
Only you know that.
Only you know what’s going to impact you.
Only you know what’s going to work.
And only you can do the work.
Stop looking for answers in a book, or on a website, or in a seminar.
Stop searching for tips on how to be better, and just … start … being better.
Nobody else is going to do it for you.
Originally published at my business website, sjmcopywriting.com, and then reproduced on my short-lived Medium blog.