Lately I’ve been taking my first baby steps in learning to use Instagram for marketing purposes.
So far, the biggest hurdle for me has been letting go of limiting beliefs, and releasing some judgmental opinions that caused me to feel resistance to getting started.
One such belief I had to overcome was the idea that sharing pictures on social media was worthless:
Why would people care to see what I’m up to? What value does that add to their lives?
But then I realized 3 things that convinced me to try any way:
- I hadn’t actually tried it yet (how am I to decide what is valuable for others?)
- Seeing pictures of my friends having a good time would make me very happy for them. (Now that I’m on it, I actually enjoy seeing what my friends are up to on Instagram)
- This blog is about creating a better life, becoming happier, making the world a better place, etc. But what credibility do I have if people can’t even verify what my own life looks like?
So far I like Instagram as a platform. People are approachable and generally are not as inauthentic as I expected them to be. (Which is a lesson in itself: Never judge anything you haven’t tried 😉 )
Interestingly enough, the crowd of people whom I did expect to resonate with (the self-development crowd), really turned me off.
I started browsing hash tags like #personalgrowth and #selfdevelopment looking for like-minded people or potential readers. But I found very little people I was on the same page with. I found a lot of meaningless motivational quotes in front of beautiful sunrises though 😉
The Success Chaser Mindset
A huge part of the people in this corner of the Instagram-sphere (is that a thing?) preached what I call “The Success Chaser Mindset”.
Common things to be proud of if you have this mindset:
- Working hard for 120 hours a week.
- Neglecting family and friends because time is money.
- Doing lots of things you don’t like doing right now because you know they’ll pay off in the long run.
Some quotes to summarize this mindset would be:
- “While other people sleep, I hustle. Sleep is for the weak.”
- “When people ask me why they never see me at parties, I reply: Why do I never see YOU at the bank, loser?”
- “While other people cuddle, enjoy beautiful walks in nature or have crazy delicious sex together, I’m out making cold hard sales. Because that’s what matters in life. And 5 years from now when I’m a millionaire, they will all realize I was the smart one.”
If these quotes could’ve easily come from your mouth, don’t feel offended by my dislike. We still do have a lot in common:
- You have a vision of something greater. Of rising above the mediocrity that rules the planet at the moment.
- You are fully committed to making that vision reality, even if that means dedicating every single one of your waking hours to it. Which is admirable, and you shouldn’t give up on it.
The problem is that, even though it seems like it, following the success chaser mindset all these people preach is actually counterproductive.
Why It Won’t Work
A lot of the mindset these self-proclaimed success gurus promote involves hustling hardcore 24/7 and putting your friends, family or “unproductive activities” on the bottom of your priorities until you’ve achieved that goal.
Now there’s a couple of things about that idea you have to consider before jumping on that bandwagon:
First of all, what does success look like to you?
For a lot of people (including me), it means becoming financially independent and having more freedom to do whatever-the-fuck-you-want all day.
But that’s not your actual vision, is it?
That’s the method to achieve that vision. If that’s the only thing you dream of, you are confusing the goal with the means.
Once you have all the money in the world, what will you spend it on? What sort of experience will you create for yourself?
And what part of that vision can you already create right now with whatever resources you have?
I don’t think there’s a lot of people out there aspiring to become unloved lonely millionaires with no friends.
If part of that “success lifestyle” for you includes traveling and having a great time with friends and lovers, then it would be pretty stupid to sacrifice all those things right now in order to become successful.
Because if that’s what more money would give you, why would you refuse to enjoy those things now that life is already handing them to you free of charge?
Instead of working for 24 hours a day, how about just working 5 hours but using that time to work smart and efficiently? Then spend the rest of your doing what you would do if you became successful already. How about taking a break now and then to travel with whatever money you already have?
Why create your own private rat race because you want to escape the rat race other people are in?
That’s not a very smart move, when you look at it from an outside perspective, is it?
The Second Layer
We can go even deeper on this if we want. Just like money was only a means to achieve your vision, that vision is still not the real goal. The vision is just another method for putting you in a certain emotional state you desire.
For example, I’d love to have a house in a warm sunny country later. With some land around it so I can get out and be in nature immediately. Perhaps an ocean or a pool to jump into every morning.
That is not accessible right now, but if I look at what I want those things to give me I get to: Immediately feeling gratitude for nature/life in general every morning. A joyful mood. The enjoyable feeling of water on my skin.
Those are all things I can incorporate in my life right now if I want, even though I haven’t made that vision reality yet. That doesn’t mean I’m not aiming to achieve it, it just means I’m not procrastinating on feeling those things until I have.
If you have goals that are literally impossible to achieve without being a millionaire you have to ask yourself: Why?
Why exactly do I want this? And is there an easier way to achieve it?
For example, lots of guys want to become successful so they can surround themselves with lots of beautiful women that (act as if) they want to have sex with them. Some even go as far as dreaming of having their very own harem. Perhaps there’s even some women who dream of the opposite as well. I don’t know.
If that’s your goal (and I know there’s a lot of you, don’t be shy), it’s time to look yourself in the mirror and find out why you want it. I’m not saying it’s wrong to want it. But it’s important you know why, for reasons that will become clear as you read on.
Is it just because you love sex?
Because if that’s the reason. There’s hundreds of people who are beautiful and willing around you already. You know how I know? Because 99% of all people on this planet absolutely love sex.
And if there’s one thing there’s still large quantities left of on this planet, it’s definitely people 😉
But it’s not gonna happen if you don’t talk to them. Becoming a billionaire won’t solve that. It will add a lot of paranoia about whether they really like you or your money though.
Is it because you love sex so much that you want to have giant orgies all the time?
Well, in that case. Just organize one. Or search the internet to join someone else’s. Seems a lot more efficient to me than having a harem. Not that I have ever had one, but having a harem seems like three full time jobs and then some.
Ever had a relationship before? Remember what an important part of your life that was? How much time and energy you invested in it to make it work? To make sure both you and your loved one made each other as happy as possible?
Now imagine having 30 of those in your life. Good luck with that. If the reason for your harem was that you simply liked to have sex with lots of people at the same time, why not just have a normal life that’s actually fun to manage, and throw a party now and then?
But that’s not even the point. The thing is, that for most people who dream of something like that, enjoyment of sex is not the reason.
Just like money was not the real thing you were after when you wanted to become successful (what you wanted to spend it on was). There’s a pretty big chance enjoyment of sex is not the reason you want to be surrounded by lots of women (or men) all the time.
Wanting to feel different is a reason. Lack of a healthy self-esteem is a reason.
If you feel unloved or uneasy when you’re alone. Or if you lack core confidence, aiming to replace that with attention from people who adhere to western beauty standards won’t fix it. The applause and approval from your peers when they see your pictures with these people won’t fix it either. The jealous stares won’t fix it. Even the sex and –god forbid- love itself from those people won’t fix it.
You know why? Because if you feel that way, there is a hole in your chest. It’s not “a little pocket” that needs to be filled. It’s a hole. Whatever you put in it comes right out the other side, and when it’s over and reality hits you, you feel just as alone.
It’s big enough for expensive cars (and all the compliments you get on them) to drive right through it, for 100s of women to fuck right through it, and for no designer suit to be able to cover it.
So if these are your reasons to become “successful”, then there’s a much easier alternative.
Take a break from trying to fix it externally, and fix your self-esteem first. I suggest starting by reading the amazing book “Six Pillars of Self-Esteem” . You may think you don’t need it, but everyone does.
The book costs about 15 bucks, and if you carefully read it, do the exercises and apply the concepts to your life you’ll get exactly the feeling you’re looking for. That’s a lot easier than becoming a millionaire first. Except that becoming a millionaire won’t actually give you that. And 15 bucks are a lot easier to make.
Next up would be to stop running from yourself and taking a moment every day to just sit down, meditate and observe what goes on inside of you that makes you look for your happiness outside of you while everything you need is already inside. This is not some spiritual woo-woo shit. It’s an important first step in every person’s journey in life that somehow gets skipped over in our western education.
How can you be happy with anything or anyone if you can’t even be happy with yourself? It’s an illusion anything else will fix that. Whatever life you create for yourself, yourself will still be there with you.
One last thing to consider before falling into the trap of this “success chaser mindset” is whose advice you’re actually following.
When it comes to the people who post those quotes, sell those courses and give you that advice, which ones are you listening to?
How many of them have actually achieved that vision they preach about? How happy do they look? Most of them don’t. They’re still trying just like you, spinning their hamster wheels and sharing advice without the results to back it up.
I’m the first to recognize the value of advice from people who have already achieved what you want to achieve. This can shave years off your learning process in itself. But when looking for good role models to follow, dig a little deeper than the surface of your vision.
You can’t just look at someone “successful” or “rich” and think if you follow their advice you’ll be successful or rich as well, as success and wealth defined differently for each individual.
So look for someone who is actually living the exact lifestyle you wish you was living. My guess is that lifestyle is not one in which where you work 24/7. Because if you really wanted that, you could just take on 2 different full time jobs as an employee and *poof* …instant success.
And while you’re following their advice as a roadmap to achieving that vision, patiently working to make it a reality, never forget to treasure what your life already has to offer RIGHT NOW.
Because what’s the point of procrastinating on your own happiness?
Instead of dreaming of the beautiful sunset you see on that motivational meme and hoping the words will lead you to it, you might as well close your laptop, go outside for a minute and look at a real one 😉