Lis Recommmends Rants

Self Help Guru Scams Revealed! Really

Are you looking for a way to improve your life, make money, or get your ex-back? Then I really think that you should immediately buy Secrets, Lies and Manifestations The Truth About Self Help by Katharine Kershaw!

Seriously I mean it.

Secrets Lies and Manifestations If you are reading this blog you are possibly looking for the simple answer to how to make money. And I’ve always tried to tell the truth – tell you I don’t have the answers, that I’m just bumbling along like the rest of you. Secrets, Lies and Manifestations does much more than that, it explains why you keep buying into books and online products. Buy the book.

I’ve evolved this blog over the years ago. When it started I seriously believed that I could make Passive Income Online. Over the years I’ve come to realise that the truth is much more complex, and getting more so. Many in my little corner of “make money online” Internet, have gone quiet, taken down their blogs, and moved on.

Some of us are focusing more on building our own products and less on ranking sites. Its tricky out there, and getting more and more difficult. One of the things I’m doing is writing more of my Indie Non-Fiction books, and to get into the spirit of things, knowing I would be asking for some reviews soon, I thought I’d get my kharma points up by doing some Amazon reviews on other books while I had quite a number of hours to kill in airports. (In case you are not familiar with how Amazon works, for Indie authors, its really important to get reviews, it helps hugely with sales, so please if you read a self-published book on Amazon, do leave a review, it doesn’t have to be glowing, just honest).

This book appealed because of the title, but I didn’t really expect to be so inspired by it that I would be furiously writing up a review in transit so I could publish it at midnight when I get home for a few hours. I was too brain dead – so here it is several weeks later! 

Katharine ruthlessly exposes the whole rotten core of the entire self help industry. From The Bible, to The Secret, Katherine uses her rather vicious wit, combined with a firm grasp on reality, to explain just why you keep buying and buying more and more products, self-help guides, and why, rather than giving you the key as promised, they doom you to repeat the cycle of failure. Her message is direct. She points out that self-help screws you, dreams aren’t enough, and how ever many times you manifest the desire to win Wimbledon or make a million dollars, your time, money and effort would be much better focused on actually taking some tennis lessons, or developing a product to serve a market that people will pay for. Which is of course the book’s failing. Katharine tells it as it is, and in doing so shatters the illusion.

There is no simple way to make money in your sleep, or to lose weight, and in so doing so she, removes the market for her follow up sequel. I hope not, because personally I’d buy it, just for her writing style and her clear-eyed worldview. So do your self a favour – buy the bloody book.

What’s not to like? Nothing really, her editing is pretty good, and she covered all the pain sacred cows in the industry. I’d probably have liked to learn more about the author, because she’s certainly one I’d buy another book from. And the final joke? The automated list of “customers who bought this book also bought …” Total Law of Attraction: Unleash Your Secret Creative Power To Get What You Want! Dr David Che Please don’t be one of those people – stop buying self-help guides/books/courses about how to live your life. Just. Live. It. Really – it is that simple!  

Although I’m pleasantly pleased to have read Katharine’s book – I’ve got to say, that she’s not going to make a fortune promoting it. Calling “scam” on self-deluded cons such as Empower Network, or Site Build It!, doesn’t exactly rake in the millions. It does, however, make some of us feel good inside.

Katharine should feel very proud of this book. So do her a favour and if you read the book and like it – write her a review on Amazon, and tell your friends.

13 replies on “Self Help Guru Scams Revealed! Really”

Interesting concept for a book! I definitely hate the bad reputation that the scammers and “get rich quick” type people give to internet marketers. It’s surprising how obviously shady some of them are, yet they still rake in the money. I guess it’s just a numbers game to them – get thousands of views and a few people naive enough will come along and buy. I’m just thankful that more and more people are becoming transparent and honest in the IM community. Hopefully the reputation can repair itself…


Sounds a bit like the whole weight loss industry – they don’t want you to lose weight because then you wouldn’t need to buy their next shiny ‘secret’, SY

Oh yes she mentions weight loss- not in a good way – its exactly the same psychology

Hey, Lis

I will probably buy this book just because you recommended it. You have a very to-the-point personality, and I think that is what most people enjoy about you! You have definitely peaked my interest seeing as I have actually read quite a bit of self-help material. I actually read stevepavlinas blog pretty often, maybe he is trying to fool me!? Who knows. Anyway, sounds like a great book.

I will do my best to get around to giving you an honest review for your own kindle masterpieces! Thanks for the heads up on a potentially very useful read.


I feel sorry for you if you classify all ‘self-help’ as nonsense. Anything based on real estate? Avoid. LoA? That is real and you don’t have to pay a dime to learn how this stuff works. I haven’t. is free and changed my life. And re making money (which is only a small part of it), he advocates value creation on or offline, not scamming. Like Ludacris said, “it’s all in your mind, so get your head tight.”

And what exactly is value creation? Snake oils are usually vague without appearing to be so. They are masters at making you feel good too. Value creation….ooh…i feel great! I’m going to create some value….ooh…and proceed to do nothing at all. Why? Because they don’t tell you HOW to do it. Oh, they do they you “how”:

“Concentrate of giving value to people” – “if there’s a lot of positive feedback you have given value”.

BullSHIT. That’s not HOW, that’s WHAT to do. (It’s not even “what to do” per se. It’s more like “fluff”)

How is a process. Step 1. Go to the forum. Step 2. Harvest some questions. Step 3. Research the questions like a madman. Step 4. Answer those questions in your article as best as you can.

Not perfect but at least better than what the self-help gurus tell you to do.

Changed your life? How so? Give me some tangible results. Don’t tell me you got healthier. Tell me your body fat percentage, before and after. Tell me your lean muscle mass. Variable heart rate. Zeo data. Hair count. (less? more? LOL) and etc.

You don’t have to pay a dime? Are you time so worthless? Reading through one of articles will take you a long time. How about the hidden cost of “trying out” his recommendations/advice? There’s no “how to” in his articles so you’ll waste time and energy too.

OK. Rant finished. In a bad mood today and steve pavlina rubs me the wrong way.

Ooh grumpie Ryan! I really feel I should write an eBook on how to spot a scam from 10 steps, but I find it hard to get past: a) engage your brain b) if it seems too good to be true it is. I struggling for the other 9000 odd words!

Um, WTF? You have obviously not read much of Steve Pavlina. A lot of his posts are filled with how-tos and he has written plenty about “tangible” (apparently you mean “physical”) things (since you are not ready to understand that all of your actions first proceed from your thoughts, although it is basic logic) – polyphasic sleep, getting up w/ your alarm no matter how early, juicing, raw food, vegan recipes, LOADS on productivity such as time chunking, email processing, incommunicado mode, to-do list approaches, managing self-employment, blogging, etc, etc. He has even written about relationships and psychic development. He is not one of the many internet marketers who just sell internet marketing to other, would-be internet marketers.

You want to hear about real results in my life? Losing weight is a pretty low-level concern for me – didn’t need to then, still don’t. I’m interested in higher-level changes. I quit my job to start my own business (it’s going well, thanks, and I currently make about 35% more money than I did as an employee), got involved with organisations in my interest areas that I would’ve previously been afraid to approach (I am now in leadership roles), lost a lot of my social awkwardness, gained friends (actual ones, not online), etc, etc – too busy to sit and list everything else that’s changed in my life, but if you are still able to dismiss all of the above as nonsense, then there is no help for you at this time.

Pancake – I agree Steve Pavlina is not JUST an internet marketer – he’s pretty much a total nutcase. And his relationship experiments ended in divorce. It’s great you have a good business going, but I think you should probably give your own initiative and brains some credit for that. You some smart, you don’t need wankers like Pavlina

That’s what I thought…until I decided that I was no scientific thinker if I failed to actually evaluate what he was saying. Subjective reality as one of various lenses you can use is not actually as strange as you might think and he is not alone in using it or exploring how we experience reality. Give it a chance, if you are interested in improved results in your life. I don’t agree with his relationship choices, but that does not invalidate the results he has achieved through other experiments, and neither does his willingness to consider viewpoints that deviate from consensus reality.

I won’t be commenting here again, but just wanted to encourage you to open your mind. You will when you are ready, but you can speed that process up. Or not. The choice is yours.

*sigh* what is with self-help devotees that they can’t have a rational argument which doesn’t descend into a ad hominem attacks?

But you’re right – I’m certainly not interested in improving my life by following a guru.


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