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No Such Thing as the Self-Help Industry

Maureen Miller

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I know this might sound silly coming from someone who skirts the perimeter of the self-help industry. However, it supports the way I coach, so accurately, I have no other choice than to proclaim “There’s no such thing as the Self-Help Industry”.

There are consultants that seep into the self-help industry. Being a business coach as well as a consultant can be an attractive offer. It might seem like one heck of a deal to get two rolled up in one. And this story is not about maligning the business consulting industry. When it comes to getting business advice they are the greatest.

Consider this. You have a business in trouble and you call up a consultant/coach to help you out. Here is where the difference lies. A consultant listens to, and reviews all aspects of your business and offers advice, suggestions and changes to your business. If that is what you want then a consultant is for you. My job as a coach is totally different.

To say that business is just business is the biggest contradiction I’ve ever run in to. A business is ALL about relationships. What kind of relationship do you have with your colleagues, staff or employees? How good of a leader are you, even if you are the bottom of the staffing hierarchy? Every business needs and should have every person involved, thinking and acting like a leader.

What kind of relationship do you have with vendors, suppliers, customers? If you don’t want to even think about it, this is an area for coaching. How about all the fires you are putting out? Want to get to a place where you are responding to events in your business and not reacting?

What kind of personal relationships do you have outside your business? To say that these are unimportant is misleading. They are VERY important. Show me a person who says my work stays at work and my personal life is for home…. well sorry I don’t believe them. I doubt very much the mind shuts off automatically when you walk into the office building. And I am willing to bet the minute you walk through the front door of your home your mind does not totally shut out work. When you have problems at work they place stress on personal relationships. When you have problems at home, unless you are a computer with a solid filing system, they walk through the front door of your office. It’s normal.

Coaching deals with handling the issues that in some way affect your business. Get to a place where you respond and not react to things in your business as well as your personal life. To believe that your business acts in isolation to the rest of your life is just not helpful or even true.

Do I know much about business? Well actually I do but I don’t give advice. My assumption is that you already know the solutions to what is vexing you. You already surrounded your business with people you admire and trust to show you how to run your business. If not, then you might want to reconsider the lack of business support. I would prefer you come up with THAT solution on your own and almost always my clients do.

“Hey! I should call up that consultant and get some help with my business plan!”

And my response would be, “Yes that is a great idea!”

If you run into a consultant who will give you business advice as well as coaching then that IS a good deal but they aren’t going to be cheap. If they are cheap then I would be suspicious.

What has this got to do with the self-help industry, not existing? Well all those books that tell you now to do things the “right” way…well there IS no right way. Exploring consulting vs. coaching was just a way to show the difference. There is only your way. I will never write a book on self-help. I don’t believe any one book is going to offer you the solution that is going to inspire, motivate and MAINTAIN the excitement that comes with “flow”.

I believe that I am a thought provoker and nothing more. You are the expert in your life and my job is to support you and ask the right questions. I know when I’ve followed my intuition and asked the right question, all sorts of lights start to come on. My clients walk away inspired, motivated and excited to try out what THEY figured out all on their own. I offer support as delayed feedback because my goal is to not have my clients accountable to me. My goal is to keep that fire burning that started with the spark of inspiration.

So is there a self-help industry? Well there are a lot of people out there that believe there is and make a million dollar business out of it. But I like to think that everyone I run into is an expert in their own lives. I’m just the catalyst.

Maureen Miller B. Ed. , C. U. G. , Associate Certified Coach Certified Teleclass Leader Coaching Personally Vancouver Island, B. C. , Canada Create a thinking revolution for yourself!


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