In the Information Age, once we reach a certain point in our early lives, we no longer trust our friends and loved ones to provide us with new information.
By the end of our schooling, our experiences have differentiated us. We see flaws in the differences and begin to identify destructive patterns in ourselves and others. We start to see our parents as the fallible humans they are. We assign blame. With increased social pressures, we strive for something different, to become someone who is better than who we are.
As the role of technology in our lives has grown, our dependence and trust in its utility is exceedingly high. We trust ourselves and others less, often preferring to consult Google, our oracle, instead.
Our next step on our quest to adulthood is to seek advice from strangers we admire, that have managed to capture our attention and adulation. There are many convincing and inspiring older actors at play in the world that seem to be in control and thriving. With a curated view of their lives, we are shielded from the many flaws that undoubtedly lie just beneath the surface.
Self-regulation takes time to develop and comes from knowing yourself better as a self-motivated human. The scars of trauma from childhood can make this journey all the more cumbersome and confusing. We often feel at the mercy of our intense emotions at this young age.
It is a common experience, to find yourself constantly doubting your own path. When “forcing” fails to yield results that are in line with your expectations, you will search for other more spiritually inclined “thought leaders” who manage to convince you that they may hold the key to your apathy.
This “leader” may come from the other side of the world and has a captivating story of their own which lights a fire in your chest. Their life sounds more exciting and fulfilling than the life you currently live, so naturally, you want to emulate them. They promise to deliver everything you’ve been searching for if you just follow his or her top 10 commandments on how to live a purposeful and inspiring life.
Welcome to the self-help century. We no longer experiment or learn through experience and failing, preferring to avoid the road…