I particularly love to write a blog in which I haven’t a clue what the subject might be and this is for several reasons. And when it is early in the morning like now, I tend to regurgitate experiences that have recently occurred. And what person who has been on Twitter more than a month (I’ve been on 3 years) has not encountered the deadly “Life Coach On The Town” aka “Bronx Zoo’s Other Cobra”? They want your money and will go to ANY means to get it. Really.
Of course the first and main reason the gratuitous slap in the face to all the life coaches, social media experts, “wisdom experts” (who either lift quotes and/or articles and take credit) or edit them just enough to insult our intelligence with their name as the credit. I love such “writers” who do not understand that we’ve been to college, because they certainly haven’t. Most of those are what are known as “life coaches” who are nothing more than a “gang of literary thieves”. What they do is often attractively package and sale mundane and sometimes exciting philosophy that we learned in college and is, of course, now free on the web. They charge a fortune for books, tapes and the like, leaving their victims (clients) bleeding in the streets, but with the opportunity to become such a “literary-thief-in-training” as well. So it has a “Donald Trump/Amway MLM feel to it”.
My wife Lee and I decided a long time ago that was not for us. Don’t get us wrong. Nearly every major life coach on and off Twitter has tried to recruit us…let me rephrase that..recruit our wallets, but we decided it might be safer to put what extra we have in savings and invest in our our clean businesses which involve designing and selling gifts and collectibles. Our business is very simple, very clean, and offers products of tangible value, no regurgitated philosophy or wisdom, simply usable and/or collectible gifts, clothes, etc.
Lee is an amazing nature photographer who writes a nature blog, Hike Our Planet, and I’m sometimes told I can turn a phrase and create a cartoon that goes on all our products. Though we often deal with POD’s (Print On Delivery) manufacturing companies, our main factory for six years now is in Rhode Island and the majority of our products sell at Amazon. Recently the Sears Marketplace picked up a good many of my cartoon gifts. Lee has taught herself not only photography, but how to take that photography and her own unique graphics and create products such as shoes, tees and gifts at her Lee Hiller Designs Shop. Her items are also available at associate shops all over Amazon.com. She has no snake oil for sale. It’s the real thing.
Why do I make this “comparison story” between “life coach” and legitimate businessperson? Early on, especially in social networking, it could have so easily gone the other way. The life coaches are artists. Con artists. They are friendly. They know all the right things to say. They can win one’s hearts and minds the way no politician or army even dreamed of doing. And they have built in radar that heads straight for the pocketbook.
Life coaches often “build a name for themselves”, then start the process of writing books, making cds and tapes, having seminars, and talking nonsense that sounds somewhat like wise philosophy, and it should, as it is more often than not lifted from major names like Emerson, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche and so many others, edited and/or watered down, and their own (the life coach’s name) placed on it. I’ve even seen them lift Biblical quotes, change them a bit, and wala, guess who the new author is?
If you’ve just started Twitter, you probably have many of them on your friends list who are following you. They seem to be predatory (the most) to newcomers who haven’t a clue. Many of the wiser ones change their moniker to “spiritual coach”, “spiritual advisor” “life author” “coach/author”, and the list goes on and on. In any case, watch for subtleties; the devil is in the detail and as I mentioned earlier, they are con-artists of the highest degree.
My wife Lee once quoted, “You are your own best life coach”, and she is so right. The alleged purpose of the life coach of whom you pay thousands of dollars is to motivate.
I prefer the freebie by Walt Whitman who would laugh at any life coach. His great quote is, “To Begin, begin”. Really, what more does one need to know?
Oh, look in the yellow-pages under “pest control” to rid ones home of rodents. I almost forgot that part of the story; but should note it since rodents and life coaches seem to be in the same category (sorry rodents, I know you’re better than that).
When I read an article, I don’t just want information, I want a remedy. A solution.
The solution is, when you find yourself being called and/or emailed by these “Oh, so nice life coaches”, and you will, cut off all ties. Yes you will hear cries like a baby. They will “badmouth you” on Twitter, facebook and wherever. Trust me, in the long-run, these are the types you DO want to bad-mouth you; for persons of goodwill know, that if these crooks think you are “no-good”, you must be a person of substance.
And you really are if you were able to out-maneuver these cyber-whacky sharks by cutting them off and blocking them from your Twitter stream. It is as simple as that. Oh and screen your calls. You may receive a few curse-word filled calls for your sinful betrayal. That means “You Done Good”. Congrats. Now it’s time to play REAL Twitter. The riff-raff has suddenly disappeared and the drama and chaos has magically dissolved. Oh, and you still have your money. Now, wasn’t that fun and easy?
On the side of the blog I’ve posted some recent products I’ve made from my various shops (the cartoon store, ShoesThatAmuse, and ABoyNameSushi) shops for your entertainment enjoyment. Oh, and please don’t be shy to purchase. If you don’t, I may have to have a life coach call you for an appointment.
Rick London is a writer, cartoonist, and designer. He created Google and MSN’s #1 ranked offbeat cartoons, Londons Times in 1997. Less than a decade later he launched online shops which now feature over a quarter million licensed products which are featured at such shopping channels as Amazon, Sears, Shop.com, Shopping.com and many others. He also has his own shops such as Rick London Collection where he sells his favorite cartoons on tshirts, mugs, greeting cards and other funny gifts. London founded the world’s only famous love quote shoes in 2007, ShoesThatAmuse.com which have received the thumbs up from APWire and USA Today. This year he launched ABoyNamedSushi, a division of his ShoeShies which are sushi artwork shoes and gifts. London has published over 500 articles and his cartoons have appeared in the Jerusalem Post. His main Londons Times Cartoon site boasts 5000+ color offbeat cartoons which have lured 8.7 million visits. Several of his originals are a permanent part of the Roy Orbison Collection and Mayo Clinic Medical Library.