Self-Help is Everywhere! Where shall I begin?

self help

The self-help concept seems to ring out at the beginning of each year then die down by the end of spring.  The Personal Development Industry has an estimated net worth ranging up to or beyond $9.9 billion.  Self-help ideas are more convenient and within reach than ever before because of the internet.  A variety of resources show themselves as new and fill our emails.  Webinars and classes are scheduled to provide a mixture of interventions and techniques from holistic approaches, traditional trainings or simple pep talk from motivational speakers.  Early bird registration incentives are appealing to the avid seeker.  The new and improved whatever(s) appear everywhere that they are sold.  Here are a few ideas to be considered before jumping into the self-help arena.


Self-help can take on many forms.  Self-help is designed to enrich our life.  Self-help can deepen our relationships.  Self-help can enhance our responsibilities as a parent or spouse or co-worker.  Self-help can intensely, vividly and radically inspire our journey called life.


Self-help can be a good thing.  Isn’t it?  The good thing is that no matter what your situation if we can somehow not feel alone in it, the weight of the burden lightens.  There are numerous ways to seek and find help.  Some people like self-help books.  Part of the fun is beginning a search and as the search advances, it can be narrowed down to the specifics that apply to you.  Some people like self-help programs.  Part of the fun is following along in the program and seeing if anyone else notices the changes.  Other people like joining self-help programs or groups.  Part of the fun is gathering with people who have an interest in common and being able to gain awareness, perspective and insight with people who you would not otherwise associate.


Self-help can also be more harmful than helpful.  People tend to collect and connect in devastation, in tragedy and in loss.  We have a tribal instinct that soothes when emotional support is received because of our loss, ailment or hurt.   We get validated in the circumstances.  We resonate with the wound that has been touched inside us.  Yet all the attention stays set on the condition and everything attached to the circumstances.  We deal with what has been dealt to us without looking beyond it.  Others may begin to identify themselves with the devastation.  This means we can take on the identity of what is not us, but instead what happened to us.  The harm develops when we get validated because of our hurt and not in spite of our hurt.  The harm comes when we are not validated in who we really are.  The harm moves in when we prolong the hurt by centering our lives on the hurt in order not to lose this newfound support and therefore we lose sight of our self-empowerment and inner core value.


Self-help is to provide a flow of healing.  Everyone should get to a point of betterment which means books are shelved; webinars are over; group attendance is less often or stopped.  If self-help becomes a perpetuated mindset, there could be something deeper happening and should be attended to.  Some mental and physical health issues are simply too challenging and serious to safely tackle on your own.  Some issues defy our ability to be objective about our conditions and may cause life-threatening harm if we try to treat ourselves.  Self-help can be a beginning.  Self-help can be a means to a completion.  Self-help can be a step in the process that reveals additional issues.


Upon further review and if something unexpected surfaces, self-help may need to take a secondary role in your self-care.  Self-help need not be minimized as an option.  Self-help definitely can be a good choice for many.  Self-help can also be a beginning for those who want change.  There are many professionals who offer introductions and consultations for those who need more than what self-help formats are designed to provide.  Let us be the ones who courage self-help, self-enhancement and self-discovery.  Let us encourage your personal growth which will deepen your relationships and stimulate your journey.  Let us also be available for your questions, concerns or considerations that enlighten and inspire this journey… we call life.

For more information please contact us through our website Sunset Community Counseling or give us a call at  720-583-4217