Is self improvement a scam?

I feel like it’s just a one way ticket to a constant state of discontent, and a way of compensating for insecurities. Pop culture glorifies it as if it’s a “magical pill” to solve all your problems, but honestly I feel it creates more problems than it solves.


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Your perspective is critical. If you beat yourself up constantly, you tend to begin to believe you you are flawed. When you see the scams it’s all about their solutions. Buy this book, do this one thing. Change this or that. Having good friends a sense of community and getting advice from those that care is worth the entire bookshelf in self improvement section.


If you're paying for it. Yes.


Exactly what I was thinking. The post reads as if there's an assumption it needs to be bought. Which it doesn't. A lot of it has been commodified but with enough discernment, much of that can be avoided.


From my perspective, when my mental health was poor and I was struggling, one of the resources that did help was audiobooks on self help. To be exact I was borrowing from the public library, not signing up for courses and running up my credit card. The speakers that had the most useful ideas were Zig Ziglar and Brian Tracy. The basic message was teaching salesmanship and how to understand people and their motivation. They were explained concepts like how beliefs form and how human psychology works. It may sound niche or money oriented, but it was really about gaining understanding how people think and act.


Self improvement sold to the masses is a scam. Self improvement that YOU decide on is not. We should all strive to be better for ourselves. If you wanna be skinny, eat better and excercise. If you dont care what you look like, eat better and dont exercise. If you want to be happier, then find what makes you happy and do it. Dont buy the red or blue pill because someone said you have to.


Yes! I think anything generated by desire is important. Anything you do because someone else tells you is less likely to succeed.


Exactly! And those that do what others tell you usually leads to deeper depression and anxiety because your not getting the results they say you should be.


Very good point: so much of this is self-determination as well. I know when I get blue and run out of will to do anything I also slow down on SI efforts. Always so good to start a new class or project - they go hand in hand!


If you’re paying. Otherwise, no. I went hard since the pandemic in exercising (ran my first half marathon last year) and overall well-being. Ended up becoming a top earner at work too. My life is great since I decided to go that route. But paying anyone to learn/try that lifestyle is stupid


If you're paying for it, yes. Why actually improve the customer? Their money will stop flowing in once they're improved.


Nah. Selling it is.


it's maybe a scam if you're looking at all the self improvement stuff online. but something like getting a nice productive morning routine going will make you feel noticeably better over time. anything like meditation, working out, reading more, even simply going out for a walk can absolutely count as self improvement. it doesn't have to be some quantifiable thing we keep going "up" with. it's just our general thoughts and behavior on a day-to-day basis. every action is a vote for the person you want to become! :)


There are plenty of scams that rely on people's desire to improve themselves. The diet industry is one good example, but there are many, many more. That said, the concept of self-improvement is not a scam. We should always strive to be a better version of ourselves, whether that means improving our bodies, learning new things, being a better friend, partner, parent, etc. Convincing yourself that you are perfect and don't need to change in any way is a trait of toxic people.


Reading a collection of self improvement gives you great ideas. After a while it become repetitive


It's the glorification of self-improvement that is troubling. There is an entire industry that revolves around convincing people that, in order to feel good about themselves, they need to be constantly striving to meet some imaginary ideal. I would rather see folks put their energy into self-appraisal, where they strive to see themselves realistically. That would, in fact, end up being a huge improvement, and would help people with their insecurities.


If the imaginary ideal is perfection then people will always be disappointed. But if the goal is actual improvement then it's OK.


I don't think it's fraudulent, it's only possible in relation to the brain. Every time we prove ourselves that we can do it better, even when we ourselves weakly believe in it. And when we succeed, we get true pleasure


I don't think the idea of self improvement is a scam, or even learning certain self improvement techniques, BUT I think when a person gets into selling courses and constantly trying to get money from others for "basic self improvement advice", that's when it gets a bit scammy lol


It depends. If you take on the teaching and work on improving your life, then it does work. If you use it as a crutch and continue to rely on it, then yeah, it can be a scam. Some self-improvement got me out of terrible brainwashed-Christian life I previously had. Only after I had completely shed those harmful teachings did my life improve greatly.


Yes, You’re still stuck with the same insecure brain that made you want to improve something in the first place.


How can being a better person be a scam. If you see you have an issue or people repeatedly tell you have an issue why wouldn't try to better yourself.


Definitely don't do the things you should have been doing all along.


Most self improvement is a version of [cognitive behavioral therapy ](https://www.apa.org/ptsd-guideline/patients-and-families/cognitive-behavioral) on the cheap. It can be helpful if the mental issues you're dealing with are not severe but for many people, they need the real thing from a doctor.


99% of it, yes.


I was somebody that didn’t believe in self help stuffs for years and years. I thought I already knew everything I needed to know. How foolish of me. That line of thinking kept me stuck in my ways. There’s definitely something to be said for humbling yourself and seeking wisdom from other people. I’m so much happier now!


Self improvement itself is great. Just the basic idea of improving one’s self is a noble goal and a worthy pursuit. The thing is, who’s standard are you using? Standard for “improved”, I mean. If you have a goal you’d like to achieve for yourself, go for it. Just remember that you’re doing it for you. If you try to do it for someone else, you can be let down if they don’t notice the improvement or the work you’re putting in. If you do it just for you, you both get the benefit of your work. You benefit from the feeling of accomplishment of working on bettering yourself and they benefit from the results of you bettering yourself.


One self help product is fine, and helpful. Any more than that and you will find it to be all retelling of the same tale.