Increase Your Results From Self-Help Products by 10x

By Leo Gura - January 27, 2014 | 13 Comments

The important things you need to understand about how self-help products work, and the tips you need to follow to get massive results.

The Real Truth About Information Products

With all the self-help information products out there — including books, audio programs, DVDs, coaching, seminars, workshops, tele-seminars, and various tools — which ones can you trust? Which ones work? Which ones produce the advertised results?

The answer is surprising. Especially to me, because when I started this journey down the self-development rabbit-hole 5 years ago, I was very skeptical and pessimistic.

What I’ve discovered after thoroughly studying 100+ books, dozens of audio and DVD products, and dozens of seminars and tools, is that almost all of them work! In fact, they work incredibly well as long as you keep in mind a few cardinal rules.

The Cardinal Laws of Information Products

Here’s what you have to know about information products:

  1. Significant change happens on the timeframe of months and years, not weeks or days. The big changes you want will take 6 months to 24 months to get.
  2. You MUST be consistent and persistent and follow the program instructions exactly!
  3. You MUST do ALL the exercises and assignments. You ABSOLUTELY MUST implement the procedure consistently.
  4. There is no SINGLE magic bullet. No one program will fix all your problems.
  5. Results aren’t rare, but they will be emotionally difficult. Be prepared to labor for them.
  6. This product may be effective, but it may not be a high-enough priority in your life right now.
  7. The change or transformation, even if big, will be more subtle than the cartoon caricature you imagine.

Most Products Actually Work

I’ve found that most reasonably well-selected self-help products can be trusted. As a rule of thumb, the people creating these products are themselves more evolved than the average businessman. They don’t want to cheat you. On the contrary, they want to help you succeed. Their greatest drive isn’t money but impact, so even if they could cheat you, they wouldn’t want to.

Of course there is the occasional exception — a wolf masquerading in sheep’s clothing — so you still have to do a bit of due diligence, but these are rare, and generally, if you sense the author’s character is solid, you can expect a solid product.

Don’t Mind Negative Reviews

Looking for negative reviews to check if a product is good or bad isn’t a good approach. Why? Consider: any program or product, no matter how good, will have negative reviews or dissatisfied customers. This has more to do with the customers than the product. And upset customers tend to eclipse the satisfied ones.

Especially with personal development, there is a great tendency to blame something external for lack of results because people are weak and do not want to admit their own short-comings: laziness, procrastination, lack of consistency, loss of focus, etc.

Ironically, the very character flaws that keep people from success and happiness in life are also the ones that compel them to search for solutions by way of information products, and also the ones that keep them from helping themselves with those products. In the hands of an incompetent, lazy individual, the most effective tool is rendered useless. The problem isn’t the tool, it’s the person!

So don’t take too much stock when you see someone criticizing one program or another. Disgruntled, unsuccessful people won’t hesitate to point fingers, criticize, and blame everyone and everything but themselves. You will get a much clearer picture by reading the positive accounts (assuming they are real testimonials and not fakes). Successful people approach opportunities with an open mind, trusting their own judgment and experience more than the opinions of naysayers.

The Self-Fulfilling Prophecy Effect

Many self-help programs and techniques require faith for them to work. It really is a case of, if you believe it will work for you, then it will, and if you don’t, then it won’t.

There is NOTHING wrong with this!!! Some things in life just work this way, and self-help is one of those things. Is this placebo effect? Maybe. Psychology — your map of reality — is all one big placebo effect. And this fact doesn’t make the effect less-than or insignificant. If you are negative, pessimistic, skeptical, cynical, and critical about everything, then you will really be lost with self-help. Watch out because you will easily create a self-fulfilling prophecy!

The real question is: Are there people who are making things work using the system? And if so, then what are they doing differently? With almost all information products, the answer is YES! And I can tell you that the difference almost always has to do with them being willing to work their asses off and make it work! They are active about it.

I’m not saying you should be a dogmatic zombie, following programs on blind faith. But you should absolutely go into every program with an totally open mind and 100% expectation that it will work. If you give it a fair chance and it doesn’t work, oh well, you lost some money and some time. But to go in closed-minded or “skeptical” is to guarantee failure because your RAS will find a way to sabotage the result.

The quality of your focus often makes the difference between success and failure. If you keep struggling and getting “burned” by self-help products, check your focus. This is probably why your life sucks in the first place.

A Hard Truth About Advertising

Yes, many self-help products are advertized like used cars.

But! The advertising on these products is necessarily exaggerated because otherwise your dumb, lazy ass won’t buy it. This is true regardless of how good the product is. Literally, if I had a product right now that could turn you into a millionaire overnight, and it really really worked, it would still take labor to sell it. Why? Simply because it still needs to be put in front of the right people, and those people need to be motivated to pull out their credit cards. Psychic inertia is that powerful! It’s why no one wants to get anything big accomplished.

Gimmicky and disgusting advertising tactics do not mean that amazing results can’t be obtained. Just expect to work harder and longer than promised.

The 80/15/5 Rule

The 80/15/5 rule always applies, no matter how good the product. This rule states that, statistically, 80% of people will get mediocre results, 15% will get good results, and 5% will get excellent results.

It’s hard to believe, but this rule is like law. This is human laziness quantified on a statistical level, and it has nothing to do with the quality or general effectiveness of the program. Even if you take a group of the brightest millionaire entrepreneurs and put them in the world’s greatest seminar room, in the end the breakdown will still be: 80% will be lazy and not take action, 15% will take a bit of action and get decent results, and 5% will work their asses off and get amazing results.

Steps You Can Take To Be In The Top 5%:

  1. Adopt an impressionable, curious, experimenter mindset. Be ready to play!
  2. Watch out for idle theorizing. You MUST practice to get results!!! Intellectual knowledge counts for very little.
  3. Follow the instructions as closely as possible.
  4. Take notes on everything and review your notes.
  5. Work the program very diligently.
  6. Only bite off one program at a time.
  7. Go back to the program frequently, re-listening and re-reading it again and again.
  8. Be extremely consistent, patient, and outcome independent.
  9. Purchase and study multiple products/books/programs over time. One program will not be enough.

Okay, that’s the hard truth about information products. But don’t let this discourage you. In fact, I expect you now to be in the top 5%! Go out there and study, implement, study some more, and work your ass off to get the amazing results that you were sold on.

Bottom Line: Most self-help products work surprising well, but you have to work them hard to get the promised results.

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Jeff says:

This video is well thought out, and a lot of the advice is spot on. Especially about persistence and doing the exercises.

However, 80/15/5 is a rebrand of the bell curve which is rebrand of the gaussian law of error. There is a case to be made that the objective of all training is to produce these splits, and that when the teaching objective, training for mastery, changes the reaults follow suit.

Adam Smith, told us the difference between a prince and pauper is early instruction.

Good video. Great website, thank you!

Leo Gura says:

Perhaps so… I haven’t looked that deeply into it. But the objective of training is not to make a select few successful people who can out-compete everyone else, it’s to make everyone awesome. It’s very frustrating as a teacher to have only 5% of your audience actually get great results. We want everyone to get great results.

Roisin says:

Hello Leo, thanks for the videos! Could you recommend any books/people that have helped you on your journey, I’m really getting into the realm of self help and seeing a lot of positive changes. Thanks again for the videos, inspiring.

Ashray says:

Leo has put up a list of total 140 books however you need to pay for it. I personally believe 20$ isn’t much for the list since he himself found them and these are world class books along with links to amazon etc. Maybe he can give a list of links on YouTube for important recorded seminars etc

Ashray says:

Is it ok for a 16 year old to read books you recommend? If it isn’t then why and till what age will I have to wait? If it is then is it ok for me to finish reading a book in a week if I am an average 16 year old?

Ashray says:

Atleast answer in it’s ok or not ok

Martin says:

Yeah I think it’s alright, just because you finish aa book in a week though doesn’t mean that you can get results as fast, especially if the book is designed on a week by week basis, effective change takes a while regardless of it being negative or positive. That’s also what he means by being open minded in regard to study study study, you know actually researching. So whatever the topic is for that week you research that and then assimilate that into your daily life, you don’t stop after that week though like school you add it to what you’ve learned. Since it is yourself though you’re the only one that will see results though it may be similar to the information it won’t actually be exact.

Billy says:

I have found myself wanting results quickly especially in my relationship. When they don’t come it can get very frustrating. This is my main objective, work on myself so I can improve my relationship with girlfriend but 6 months fuck that’s discouraging. she is too awesome and someone will have her by the time she sees results . Honestly makes me want to throw in the towel.

Martin says:

Yeah I get that, what are you meaning when you say you’re working on yourself? You’ve already admitted that you want your girlfriend to notice. You’re working on the image you portray, when you’re actually working on yourself you don’t have time to care what other people think of you, it will show in the way you are who you are. Your comment shows me that you’re probably lacking commitment, in which case why would she want to be with someone who isn’t committed, would you?

Christopher says:

Hey Leo, I’m at a bit of a crossroad.. a fork in the road, if you will. I’ve watched all of your Spiritual Enlightenment videos and I’m deeply interested with furthering my journey on this. My question is this: would you recommend reading books based on consciousness first or stick to traditional self-help books and work my way up the ladder.. or does it really matter?


Leo Gura says:

If you’re serious about enlightenment then you should take your focus away form regular self-help for a while. And if you’re not serious about enlightenment, then it’s best you don’t even start the enlightenment journey.

Christopher says:

Well, a decision has been made. I’m going to start with the introductory books you recommended within this regard on your Top 140 List, including A New Earth by Eckhart Tolle (picked it up for free at a non-profit bookshop). But for now… I’m done talking, it’s time for the rubber to hit the road

Thanks a lot!

(Cheers to a 1,000 hours)

Hengame says:

Great Videos, I enjoyed and got a lot help as always, you are great Leo please continue to help us with your amaizing efforts, i habe Bern hone through many theropy but none could help me at all, i appreciate you thousand times and love your videos and watch them more than at least 2 times please Continue, my appreciation.

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