Beware of the Promise

Beware of the Promise

I think I’m starting to see something that one of my mentors has been trying to instill in me for a while.

There are plenty of courses, programs, and business opportunities out there making big promises. Which is not a problem.

What is a problem is we can take everything at face value and internalize it. We are told we can have everything we want in life, for instance, so we end up believing we can have everything we want in life through the program, when that simply may not be the case. Because not everyone taking the program is in the same place physically, mentally, emotionally, or spiritually.

Some people are ready to go. Other people already have structures and teams in place. For them, it may be the right program at the right time.

But can you honestly say you liked every book people have ever recommended to you? Exactly. Books hit people differently at different times depending on what they’ve already experienced and the stage of life and growth they’re in.

Certainly, take the program seriously. Get everything you can get out of it. But don’t set yourself up for disappointment. It’s okay to be a little skeptical – even a lot skeptical – of the promise.

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What You Get is What You Get

What You Get is What You Get

There is no universality to the results produced in a program.

Every course, seminar, or workshop promises something, whether overtly or subtly. But just because it’s the promise of the program doesn’t mean it’s what you’ll get. Just because students of the programs are giving glowing testimonials and reviews doesn’t automatically mean you’ll get the results they’ve gotten.

There are a whole host of factors seen and unseen (usually unseen). Things like:

  • Some were ready to take life by the horns when the course was presented to them
  • Some had specialized knowledge, expertise, or financial resources available (that you didn’t have) upon starting the program
  • Some had already invested heavily in themselves and their ongoing self-education, to where the new program was like the icing on top of their personal development cake

If the creator of the program blames you for your failures (get out), or if you even find that you turn to self-blame, it’s time to look at the facts with a sobering mind.

Look at the other people who’ve taken the program. Who are they? What have they accomplished? How do they behave? What is their life like?

A blurb accompanied by a picture on a website can create trust and connection. But if you don’t have direct contact with these people, it’s like chasing shadows. You don’t know all the contributing factors to their success.

Which may sound depressing.

But what you get out of a program isn’t wrong. Your discoveries aren’t worthless. The knowledge and skills you’ve gained aren’t without merit.

You got what you got. That’s it.

But there is more available if you do it again. In a new space and time, old concepts and ideas can leap out as if they had never been there before. Of course, they were. But this is the magic of spaced repetition. The program didn’t change. You did. You became something different over time. It’s inevitable. And as you become something different, you see things through new lenses.

You’re getting what you’re getting. Others are getting what they’re getting. And there’s nothing wrong.

But if you feel like you were shortchanged, don’t give up. Keep growing. Keep learning. Something will connect.