23 Sep Is Coaching & Self-Help really a SHAM?
I’ve recently read a book called ‘sHAM” which according to the author stands for Self Help & Acualisation Movement. His primary premises are that many of the self-help gurus (and in this category he includes Tony Robbins, Dr. Phil and more) are (1) not qualified and (2) simply interested in building businesses and making money. He’s highly critical of the whole self-help movement arguing that it intentionally makes people feel inadequate so they’ll spend more money on books and workshops etc.
To be honest, I’ve found the book both fascinating and frustrating. On the negative side, his arguments are absurd in that he lumps all motivational speakers and coaches and others into one basket and essentially labels them all as shonks. He says nothing, or very little, about the many good people doing good things to help people live better lives. On the other hand, and at the same time, he’s right when he points to the lack of scepticism many have when engaging the services of a coach or paying to attend a seminar. Few actually look at the qualifications of the presenter to see if he/she has actually been trained to do what he/she says his/she’s going to do.
Read the next Happiness Institute eNewsletter for more thoughts on this and for my opinion about the lessons to be learned from his overly and excessively negative (but also, in some ways, thought-provoking) account of the self-help movement.