Life Coaches And Relationship Experts

man and woman doing yoga
Naval Gazing. That’s what you will get from a “life coach.” If you are lucky.

There’s a lot of things that have irritated me throughout my life, but the one that pisses me off the most, hands down, is the so-called “life coach.” The only thing that is worse than a “life coach,” is a “life coach and relationship expert.”

What pisses me off so bad about these people you ask? Why I’m glad you mentioned it! Let’s get right down to it shall we?

First off, there are zero (zilch, nada, 0, none, no) requirements to become a “life coach.” You don’t have to have any specialized knowledge. You don’t have to have any certification. You don’t have to have any licensing. You don’t have to have anything at all actually. All you do have to have, is to say, “Hey guys! I’m a fucking life coach!” That’s it. That’s all you need. Just say that you’re a “life coach,” and guess what?! You’re a life coach. Did you know that convicted felons can be “life coaches?” That’s how low the bar is. Last I checked, the only thing that a convicted felon was good at, was getting caught. They can’t legally own firearms or vote in the United States of America, but they can be “life coaches.” Keep that in mind if and when you are out “shopping” for a “life coach.”

Now in my own personal, first hand experience, I have yet to meet someone who claims that they are a life coach, that are actually doing better than me. Without exception, every life coach I have personally met, their lives are steaming piles of dogshit on top of a trainwreck. And I’ve met quite a few life coaches over the last few years. None of them are worth the business cards that they are handing out like candy. Not a single one of them.

Second thing about life coaches that bugs the shit out of me:

Who are they to tell you how to live your life? They aren’t you. They don’t have your experiences, they don’t live your life, they don’t have your skills, and trust me, the only skill I’ve encountered that they do have is the ability to bullshit themselves and you if you aren’t careful. Being a “life coach” is such a broad, vague, and nebulous thing. Think about it. Supposedly these people are claiming that they have the solutions to most, if not all, of your problems. I mean, they are “life coaches” right? So they are going to “coach” you on life! What makes them so fucking special? Seriously.

Would you ask a mechanic that doesn’t play basketball, how to play basketball? Would you ask a plumber how to code? Would you ask your grandmother how to drive a race car? I’ll bet you wouldn’t. Asking a “life coach” about anything is pretty much tantamount to what I just mentioned. If you wouldn’t ask your grandmother how to fly an airplane or how to shoot hoops, why would you ask a “life coach” how to do those things? Trust me, they don’t know how to do those things either. If they did, they would be shooting hoops professionally, flying airplanes, or driving race cars, not giving out “life advice.”

Does your life suck so bad that you are actually considering asking a “life coach” for advice? You’re better off going and getting a “psychic” reading for all it will help. You’ll get about the same advice, and probably a lot cheaper than what a “life coach” is offering you. In fact, the only thing you’re going to get out of a “life coach” is a lighter wallet. That’s it.

What’s the difference between an expert and a “life coach?”

An expert knows a very specific area, job, or skill very well. An NBA basketball player could probably teach you a thing or two about basketball. A computer programmer could probably teach you a thing or two about computers and possibly coding. But a “life coach?” You’ve got to be kidding me. “Life coaches” are people who don’t want to actually go out and get a job and do any real sort of work. They would rather tell you what to do instead of doing it themselves.

Now let’s talk about “relationship experts.”

These people are “life coaches” masquerading as if they know relationships well. Now, to give them the benefit of the doubt, maybe they do. Maybe they have been in a relationship for years and years on end. They probably know a thing or two. Problem is, your relationships, or lack thereof, isn’t going to be their relationships. They aren’t you. Their partner isn’t your partner. What has worked for them, may not in fact, work for you. Tread carefully here, your love life, or future love life may depend on it.

Would you trust the advice of someone who is currently single, but will tell you that they are a “relationship expert?” Who would you trust more, your grandparents that have been married for 50 years, or some person off of the internet that bounces from one relationship to the next?

This one is directed specifically to the Men out there:

The worst thing you could possibly do is go to a woman “relationship expert.” Don’t do it. For the love of your future children, your future wife, girlfriend, significant other, just don’t fucking do it. You’ll end up a beta orbiter at best. At best. At worst, you’ll end up pissed off, broke, confused, and bitter. Oh and alone. You want to know how to get good with women? Go find a man who is good with women, and talk to him.

This one is directed specifically to the Women out there:

I know you mean well. Truly I do. But if you love Men, truly love, adore, and cherish them, stop giving them advice on how to get women. Stop giving them advice on how to be a man. You are not a Man. You have never been one. You will never, and I mean never, be one. Just like we Men have no idea what it’s like to be a woman, you have no idea, and you never will, what it’s like to be a Man. So knock it off. I know you come with good intentions, but the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Stop it. Why don’t you focus on working on you and on becoming the best woman you can be, and let us Men figure our own shit out?

Guys, we have sat at the knee of women for most of our lives. First it was our Mother’s, sisters, cousin’s, and aunt’s. Then we sat at the knee of our female teachers from K through 12. Then many of us sat at the knee of our female professors during college. And then we sat at the knees of our wives and girlfriends. It’s time for us to figure our shit out. Maybe the absolute last thing we need to hear from is another woman? Ladies, we love you and we got this. Thanks for your concern and your caring, truly. But we got this.

To wrap this up:

Realize that anytime you see or hear the words “life coach,” you are dealing with someone who has no credentials, no required licensing, probably no degrees, and even if they do, so what? I have a degree. A BS in fact. Do you know what BS stands for. BullShit. Do you know what an MS degree is? More Shit. And can you guess what PHD stands for? Piled Higher and Deeper. That was actually a quote from a professor that I had when I was in college back in the early 90’s.

Your life experiences are your own. Are you willing to hand over your money, time, and trust to someone that doesn’t really know you? Someone that hasn’t actually walked in your shoes? Someone that isn’t and wouldn’t be held legally responsible for giving you bad, or inaccurate information? Because that’s the thing with “life coaches” and “relationship experts,” you won’t necessarily be able to hold them legally accountable in the event that you take their advice and fuck your life up even worse than it already is.

I wouldn’t dream of telling you what to do, or how to live your life. I’m not you. I don’t have your experiences and the last time I checked, you aren’t me, so you don’t have mine. Chances are, you already know what you need to do. So just do it. Don’t bother wasting your time and your money on a “life coach.”

You want to learn specific skills? Fine. Go find someone that actually knows those skills and can show them to you on demand. That’s an expert. A “life coach?” Tell them to go pound sand.

 

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Be Selective

man in grey hoodie standing on bridge over the expressway

Here’s something I learned awhile ago, and it has made my life so much better.

Be Selective.

Be selective about who you spend time with.

There are a lot of people out there that will just waste your fucking time. Apparently, they don’t have much or anything going on in their worlds, so they will want to be in yours and waste it.

I see it all the time in my side gig.

People come to me for advice about whatever it is that is going on in their world, I give them advice based on what I see, what I know, and what I’ve experienced. What do they usually do?

Nothing.

They shoot the shit, they waste my time. There is a positive here though. They pay me for my time. I don’t do that shit for free. Trust me on this one Men, if you are going to “waste” my time, you are going to pay me for it. I’m getting something out of it.

Be selective.

Choose who you spend your time with. If you aren’t getting anything of value out of it, don’t do it.

I get value out of these blog posts with you guys. I get value out of your feedback. I get value knowing that you are getting something from this, even if it’s only a laugh.

My circle of friends has gotten smaller and smaller over the years, that’s because my tolerance and patience for bullshit is damn near zero these days.

You know what though? My quality of life has just improved over and over. The friends that are still there? They are true treasures. I wouldn’t give them up for anything. I get massive value from them. I give them massive value in return.

The time wasters either are gone entirely, or they pay me for my time. Either way I win.

Be selective what you watch and what you read. You can waste a whole bunch of time there too. Not everything you watch has value. Not every book you read has gold.

Zero Tolerance. It’s been a buzz word in the corporate world for some time.

What if you extended that into your personal world?

Zero Tolerance for bullshit.

Zero Tolerance for time wasters.

Do that and see what happens.

You might surprise yourself.

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Just Because You Can, Doesn’t Necessarily Mean You Should.

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The other day, my mind got to wandering like it tends to do, and I got to thinking about a prior job of mine. Now mind you, I haven’t thought about this job in years. It was an okay job, as far as jobs went. The pay was decent, the co-workers were okay as well, and the general working conditions were fine. But there was one thing that was a thorn in my side about this particular job:

The company found a way to screw its employee’s out of over-time. Something to do with DOT regulations or whatnot. I’m not exactly sure what they found, or where exactly they found it, but find it they did. Or so they claimed. So because of these DOT regulations, we as a company, fell under some umbrella of sorts and so the company didn’t have to pay us over-time. I was thinking about this old job when I wrote the tweet.

Just because you can, doesn’t necessarily mean you should.

What is the first rule of business? To make money.

What is the second rule of business? See rule #1.

I understand that being in business is about making money, I really do. I understand it completely. If your goal isn’t to make money, you have no business being in business.

That being said, there are ways to go about doing business. Sure you can fuck your employees over. You can do the same to your customers too. Or you can do things where you make money, provide a valuable service or product, your employees are happy, and so are your customers. Or you can just fuck everyone over. Yes, I know, I repeated myself.

I repeated myself because it seems that that is the way of business these days. Tell the employees and the customers what they want to hear, and then fuck them over.

I want you all to understand this:

Any business you are dealing with, wants your money. Or they want you to make them money. Refer to the Rule Number One of business. Nothing wrong with that. You can shear a sheep many times, but you can only skin it once though. Seems that a lot of businesses have forgotten that one.

Awhile back, I remember going with a friend to a comedy club. We were going to see Pauly Shore. I bought the tickets online, that way we wouldn’t have to wait in line to buy tickets, and it was also a way to insure that we had tickets in the event that the show sold out.

We get to the venue, and since the club served alcohol, they required ID to get in. Everybody had to show theirs, including me. Then a problem arose. My friend had accidentally let their ID expire. It had expired by two days. Because of this the club would not let us in to see the show. I thought for sure that I was out a hundred bucks because of this. (The tickets were 50 bucks apiece.) Since it wasn’t the fault of the club, I figured that they would tell me “too bad, so sad.” But they didn’t. They actually offered a refund. And a few days later, lo and behold, the hundred bucks was back in my account. Do you think I’ll be going back to this comedy club in the future? You can bet your sweet ass I’ll be going back.

Now let’s fastforward to another bar that I went to recently.

It’s an outfit that’s not too far from where I live, and I’ve been there multiple times over the years. I walk in on a friday night and the place isn’t packed, but it’s not dead either. Basically it’s about average for a friday night. As I’m walking up to the bouncer to have him check my ID, I overhear some sort of drama going on at the ticket booth that this place has. There’s a girl standing there, in tears, talking to the gal in the booth. Apparently the girl was trying to get a refund on her ticket. Apparently the band that she paid to see had cancelled and wasn’t coming. Apparently that band was supposed to show up that same night that I was there. Who knew?

Anyways, I don’t know all the particulars about why the band wasn’t showing up, hell to be honest, I had no idea that they were even coming and that they were supposed to be there that night. But they weren’t coming for whatever reason. This young girl, probably 22 to 26 if I had to guess, wanted a refund. Sounds reasonable to me. I would want one too. The gal inside the booth looked at the girl’s ticket, pointed at it and said, “All sales are final. We reserve the right to change or cancel shows, with or without notice.” It was right there on the ticket.

The girl was devastated. I felt really bad for her. I totally got her disappointment. If I had paid for a ticket and the band didn’t show up, I’d be disappointed too. The bar was legally in their rights to not offer a refund. After all, it said right on the ticket, “All Sales Are Final. No Exchanges. No Refunds. We Reserve The Right To Change Or Cancel Shows, With Or Without Notice.” Just because they could, doesn’t necessarily mean they should though. I would think that the bar would value her business, especially her repeat business instead of keeping the money from that ticket sale. But hey, maybe I’m wrong. Maybe they don’t care about her business in the future. Maybe their motto is, “We got her money, fuck her.” Seems that way to me.

As the girl was about to leave the bar, I pulled her aside real quick and said, “Hey, I overheard what happened there. That doesn’t sit right with me. May I see your ticket real quick?” She showed it to me and that’s how I know about their legalese and their no refund policy. I asked her, “How did you pay for this ticket?” She said, “I bought it online from their website.” I then asked her, “Did you pay with a credit card, debit card, paypal?” She told me that she paid with a credit card.

I then told her, “You should contact your credit card company. Tell them you would like to dispute the charge. Now that’s not a guarantee that you will get your money back for sure, but you just might.”

I used to work in the credit card industry, and as far as I know, the dispute process hasn’t changed much.

Here’s basically how it works:

You buy something on your credit card. You decide you don’t want whatever it was, or it was defective, or you never received it, etc.

The credit card company would usually like you to try and work it out with the merchant at first, if possible. If not then you dispute the charge.

You call them up (you might be able to fill out a dispute form online these days) and explain what the charge is, the day that it was made, ideally the day it posted to your account, and why you want to dispute it.

If you meet their minimal criteria, the credit card company will put the charge in dispute and issue what is called a provisional credit. You also won’t have to pay for that charge that is part of your balance while it is in dispute. It won’t accrue any interest while it is in dispute either, nor will it be penalized as late.

The credit card company then will contact the merchant to get their side of the story. This is all done in some form of writing and/or documentation.

After the credit card company has heard both sides, they will either make the provisional credit permanent and you got your money back, end of story, or they will take the provisional credit away and tell you why they think you need to pay the charge. This too will be done in some form of writing/documentation.

Most of the time, the credit card company will side with their customer, not the merchant. Most of the time. They want to keep you happy, they want to keep doing business with you. They want to keep making money off of you. Honestly, the odds are in your favor. It’s not a guarantee, but it’s worth a shot.

Over the years, I’ve had to dispute a handful of things, and the credit card company sided with me on almost all of them. So for me, it was worth the time and energy to enter those items into dispute.

By the way, you usually have a window of when you can put something in dispute. It can vary from 60 days after the charge posted, up to 2 years or more. That timeline depends on which credit card company you are going through. You’ll need to check with them as to the deadline for disputes.

If the credit card company decides to favor the merchant, you’re not totally shit out of luck. In some cases, you may be able to recover your losses through legal action via civil courts and attorneys. It may not be worth the time, money, and effort to go this route, but you usually have this option as well, but that one is up to you to pursue.

One thing I’ve done either way, win a dispute or lose it, is I won’t do business with that particular merchant again. If they weren’t willing to work something out with me and I had to go an alternate route, then fuck them. You can shear a sheep many times, but you can only skin them once. To me, they don’t care about me, even as a customer, they just want my money. Vote with your wallet and shop/go/attend somewhere/something else.

Oh, and if you were wondering about that bar that I went to the night the girl got refused a refund? Yeah I left. I didn’t stick around and buy a bunch of drinks. I haven’t gone back there and won’t be going back there either. Because fuck them.

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