butterflyHi Maria,

I’m hoping you can shine a light on something I’ve been struggling with recently. Like all humans, I’m going through this journey of self-discovery and uncovering my inner being. Along my journey, I’ve enrolled in several schools of thought. Taking a peak at each one, I’ve learned so much and applied what I’ve learned to produce some awesome results.  I recently completed a course that was VERY intense, profound, and produced what seem to be miraculous results—unlike anything I’ve ever experienced with myself and other participants. So far, I’ve completed 2/3 of the courses that are available, and just completed a 10-week series. I’m very proud of myself. It feels great knowing that I accomplished this, because this kind of work is no walk in the park. Now, I want to go out in MY world and utilize the things I’ve learned and continue to produce the amazing results.

My discord comes from this particular organization constantly pushing me to invite other friends to participate, and to keep pushing myself to give more and more time and attend more classes. When I gave my reasons for not attending the next course, they discounted my position and wouldn’t accept my answer. Being the analytical type of person I am, I began to pick apart my reasons. I realized I want to allow myself to be out in MY real world. I feel like I got my wings and now I want to fly! Except, I feel I’m being told something else. A lot of what I learned was to be authentic, and continuing to participate just to appease my educators/leaders seems kinda inauthentic to me. Despite this, there are still a few weekly calls, and on the calls I’m polite and open. The calls are mostly about trying to get me to go back, and then I begin again to question my own reasons. My inner being says, “No, you are good for now. Go play and create for a while,” but then I doubt myself again. What do you suggest?

Signed,

Boy in the Cocoon

Dear Boy in the Cocoon,

It’s amazing the level of unhappiness at which some people are willing to live their lives. Not you! You’ve done a lot of inner work to improve yours. Congratulations!

Self-improvement programs can bring quick, immense, life-changing insights. Integrating what you’ve learned into your life may be a bumpy process. You are wise to live a little before taking more classes.

The sales push from this company is troubling in several ways. First, it seems they don’t practice what they preach. The classes taught you to be more authentic in your communications, but when you employed that method with them, they didn’t take you at your word and criticized your reasoning. In addition, the push to bring others into the program is a big red flag. It could be a multi-level marketing operation, and as consumers, we must be very discerning about getting involved with this business model. Check out these articles from the FTC and Business Insider magazine.

And, what is the purpose of these weekly calls? Is it to help you stay on track with your goals, or to sell you on the next course and push you to bring in new members? If those purposes are mixed, that will play with your head, big time.

There’s a saying to the effect: “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.” Attributed to Buddha, the origin is more complicated. There’s wisdom here no matter who said it. For me, it applies to your situation this way: These classes came into your life at just the right time. Perhaps you have learned all you need/can from this particular teacher. After some time away, you may return, or a new teacher will appear. You’ll never know which way is best if you feel pressured into the next step.

FB_IMG_1441171120247My suggestion: Listen to your inner being! It usually gives the best advice, and in your own words: “No, you are good for now. Go play and create for a while!” If these folks are harassing you, block your number and cut off communication for the time being, or permanently. Each time you get drawn into a conversation, you’re telling them, in effect, that you haven’t landed on your final answer and still can be persuaded. Your inquisitive nature leads you to remain open, but based on what you’ve written, you’ve seen enough of this program for now. Don’t let them hold you bound—break through that chrysalis and fly, baby!