3 Popular Self-Help Beliefs That Harm More Than Help

How one man single-handedly ruined the self-growth industry.

Linda Caroll
Feb 19 · 9 min read
Image by Pexels from Pixabay

A runaway bestseller that shaped an entire industry…

Book photos from antiquebook.com // Samuel Smiles photo from Wikipedia

We Need Self Help More Than Ever…

Self Help Beliefs that Harm More Than Help…

Samuel Smiles photo from Wikipedia. Letters collection by LD Rare books collection

Smiles was not very successful in his careers as a doctor and journalist. He joined several cooperative ventures, but they failed for lack of capital. Disillusioned, he turned away from middle-class utopianism. He finally found intellectual refuge and national fame in the isolation of self-help.

Belief #1. Laziness is a Character Flaw

Belief #2. Hard Work + Perseverance = Success

Belief #3. You Can Learn from Rich People

There is Some Onus on The Reader, of Course.

“Don’t aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one’s personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself.”
―Viktor E. Frankl, Man’s Search for Meaning

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