... issues and tissues with a touch of the spicy from the spirit hag ...
... oh, how i HATE self-help books
Published on December 12, 2004 By mignuna In Misc

 

I hate self-help books. I hate them so much that it’s almost pathological. I hate them so much that when I see people reading them, I want to yell at them for prostituting their literacy.

 

They are insipid things, creeping up on people, pretending to offer the answers to lifes’ problems, yet containing little more than some words arranged in a way that gives the illusion that the author may have some vague idea about how to ‘fix’ things.

 

The myriad of titles available astound me. Their stupidity annoys me so much that I am all but ready to give up one of my most pleasurable pastimes, (the ‘bookshop wander’), in order to avoid the horrible sight of yet another turd trying to pretend they have the answer.

 

(What’s the fugging question ? That’s what I want to know).

 

Aside from being patronising and prolific, these self-help books also have a dangerous tendency to relieve the reader of any sense of responsibility for their ‘situation’. Got no friends ?. That’s not your fault for being an arrogant asshat, it is surely only that you’re misunderstood.

 

Can’t keep your dick in your pants ?. Of course you can’t be blamed. It was that awful woman 43 years ago that crushed your fragile soul and caused you to forever seek re-affirmation of your sexuality through new encounters.

 

Do you mug people or roll little old ladies ?. You poor darling, you just need a hug. We all know that everyone in your entire life (no wait, make that everyone on the entire planet) is far less sensitive and advanced than you are. We can’t be expected to understand.

 

I’d like to see some self-help books that actually had a shot at being helpful. How about “It’s all your own fault AND you know it”, or perhaps “Life is hard for EVERYONE – get over yourself”.

 

Books that might tell the truth about how most life-problems are at least partially the fault of the person in the ‘mess’.

 

Books that admit that that owning up, telling the truth, facing yourself and those you know and love with honestly and integrity are all most people ever need to do in order to be spiritually ‘okay’.

 

I’m not talking about ‘real’ problems here, like poverty and illness, I’m talking about an industry built on shifting guilt and thusby self-perpetuating. Intellectual approaches applied to everyday lives serve little more benefit than to waste a few more empty days on another fake ‘answer’.

 

News flash: you are a unique and unrepeatable individual, and no formula from any mind but your own is going to solve your problems for you.

 

Self-honesty in the best policy. Regurgitating the theories of others just wastes the time you have left to incubate your own. You just don’t need any help to think.

 

(But if you do, well, there’s always "Thinking For Dummies” !

 

 

"
Comments (Page 1)
on Dec 12, 2004
I agree and share your hatred for most self-help books.

I think my hatred is triplefold for the "enlightened" readers of those books who are just so sure this is the book I need to read!
on Dec 12, 2004
Reading self help books is like self medication - take the wrong pill and you could make your condition worse.
on Dec 13, 2004
Jeez, mig, don't sweat the small stuff!

I hate self help books too. My mom is a self help addict, and she drives me nutso with her "dilly you absolutely must read this book!!".

They are trash, the chickflick of the literary world.

Great article Vanessa.

Dyl xx
on Dec 13, 2004
I dont know if i hate 'em or not, I've never read one, cant you tell? LoL


LW, I think you are your very own self help book. You help us all help ourselves.
on Dec 13, 2004
I was once a self help book junky. Trying to figure out what the hell was going on with me when I was 18 - 20 and suffering from panic attacks and depression I thought that I could find life's answers between the enticingly bright covers of a paperback.

Until I realised that there's an awful lot of them.

And they all claim to have the 'answer'.

I gave up and saw a shrink who, surprisingly, helped. Who made me accept that I brought a lot of my dramas upon myself. And that I had a choice in how to deal with things. I haven't touched a self help book since. And anyway - if it is so self perpetuated, this help, why do we need a book to tell us how?

I'm with you on the diet books, LW. It's the equation between energy taken in vs energy expended that keeps my spare tire around my waste, not dreaded carbs or poor food combination. If I got off my arse, and shut my mouth a little more often, I think the problem would begin to solve itself!
on Dec 13, 2004
I like your stuff its like coming up for a breath light in an big arse dark ocean.
on Dec 13, 2004
heh good laugh. by the way I have a book for people that hate self help books....... bwahahahahahahahahahahaha
on Dec 13, 2004

I have a book for people that hate self help books.......

"It's not your fault that you don't understand self help books and their appeal.  Please buy "Help for the self-helpless".  It is only $39.95 and will finally cure you of your self-help phobia.  Order today and receive a "blame it on my mother" bumper sticker free!"

on Dec 13, 2004
"blame it on my mother" bumper sticker free!"


My favorite part! Good one Karma!
on Dec 14, 2004

My favorite part! Good one Karma!

i agree, heather. karma, i think you should look into this as a business idea !

"It's not your fault that you don't understand self help books and their appeal. Please buy "Help for the self-helpless". It is only $39.95 and will finally cure you of your self-help phobia. Order today and receive a "blame it on my mother" bumper sticker free!"

bwaaaa haaaaa ! karma, i'm sold ! where do i sign ?

heh good laugh. by the way I have a book for people that hate self help books.......

moderateman, i know you were joking, but i wouldn't be surprised if such a book existed !!!

I like your stuff its like coming up for a breath light in an big arse dark ocean

hey henry . i'm so glad you're here. everyone, this man has known me since i was 16 and he still likes me ! astounding !. everyone ... meet henry !

Who made me accept that I brought a lot of my dramas upon myself

ah suz, my love, didn't we all ?

I dont know if i hate 'em or not, I've never read one, cant you tell?

in a word ?. yes !.  sabrina, if i didn't hate these books so much, i'd insist you write one, actually. you could call it 'I Live My Life Instead Of Reading About It'. (now that one i would buy) !.

LW, I think you are your very own self help book. You help us all help ourselves.

see ?. hehe. get writing, sabrina

My mom is a self help addict, and she drives me nutso with her "dilly you absolutely must read this book!!".

yes dyl, my father also subscribes to the 'reading about your problems instead of fixing them' school of life. i think this is what parents call 'leading by example' ?

Reading self help books is like self medication - take the wrong pill and you could make your condition worse.

well said, raven !. you should write a book on that

I think my hatred is triplefold for the "enlightened" readers of those books who are just so sure this is the book I need to read!

indeed, heather. i have even been given such a book as gift once (from a person whose life was such a mess that i regarded their support of the book as reason enough to ignore it) !

 mig XXX

on Dec 24, 2004
There's a really funny one out there called something like "He's really not into you." I've seen it on news shows and such. Not sure if it's supposed to be funny, but I think it's on track as one of those books you would really like to see.
on Dec 24, 2004
Yeah! Let's hold a book burning! Gather all the self help books, and the chicken soup for the idiots soul, and quotes for a better life, and 500 top things to be happy about books and lets have a giant bon fire!
on Dec 25, 2004
I have come across* (note - read) some self help material , and you are right, most of it is rubbish, however - there is some excellent material available that points the finger at yourself, and you learn to take responsibility for your actions!

I would say this blog was some of that material, but you already knew that
on Dec 28, 2004
Miguna, well done on the article. I agree completely. Misappropriation of blame is the biggest problem the world is facing today, as far as I'm concerned. And this stems from the individual's inability to accept responsibility for their own actions. It is for this very reason I also take issue with 'psychoanalysis'. How can repeating one's own failures of the past make their futures seem brighter? Just get over it and get on with life, I say.

Cheers,

Maso

on Dec 28, 2004
I've never read self help books either, i just look at the price and think thats not gonna help my finances No seriously they just dont appeal. I read horoscopes or make stupid surveys, I confess being gouilty of these, lol!
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