Are You a Visionary or a Fraud?

They say we should all teach what we need to know, rather than just what we already know.

And, like everything “they say”, it can be empowering or detrimental, to yourself and others, depending on how literally you take it.

For instance… the concept of “acting as if”, or “fake it till you make it” can be very powerful. If you “be” what you want, and “do” what it takes to get there, you can “have” whatever it is that much quicker.

This be-do-have principle says that if you want to be a singer, you tell the world you’re a singer, and then you sing your little butt off as you practice every day, and then you become a talented singer who can carry a tune across the country and back, smiling every step of the way as you entertain everyone you meet.

And from a journalistic perspective, it also makes perfect sense. If you enjoy investigating and learning what you need to know, and then passing those gems of knowledge on to others by publishing or producing something they can benefit from, you’re empowering yourself and your audience.

For instance, I’ve been writing a lot of parenting articles lately, as you can see from my portfolio. But I’m not claiming to be a parenting expert… I’ve only been a parent for 10 months! What I am claiming to be is a writer who is passionate about researching and discovering new things that can help me on this parenting journey, and sharing that treasure with others in the same boat.

Yes, it’s “teaching”… but I’m not really the “teacher”.

The disconnect comes when I see people — especially in the personal development field, but sometimes in online marketing too — who are claiming to be experts in what they need to know, rather than investigators.

  • They try to teach people how to make money or have prosperity consciousness when they’re flat broke.
  • They try to teach people how to manifest a soul mate when they’re single… for the 12th time.
  • They try to teach people how to build a newsletter list when they’ve only got 52 subscribers.
  • They try to teach people how to get traffic to a website, when they can’t get enough traffic to their own website to make money off the very product that’s going to allegedly teach you how to do it.

This isn’t “acting as if” — being the person you want to become before you’re actually that person — this is being incongruent, and not walking the talk.

As one of our renegade teachers says, “That dog don’t hunt.”

We saw an episode of Larry David’s Curb Your Enthusiasm where he kept having run-ins with “sample-abusers”, who take too many free things while not respecting others. Well, going too far with this principle would make you a “faker-abuser”.

The difference is the involvement of other people as students, rather than just viewers, and the guise of being a “guru” rather than a “journalist”.

See, if you say you’re a singer — and try to ENTERTAIN OTHERS while you’re still hitting bad notes half the time — you’re a visionary with drive and ambition who will make it, if you don’t give up. Yes, you’re “teaching”… but from the standpoint of inspiring people with what’s possible, not “how to do” something.

If you say you’re a singer — and then try to TEACH OTHERS to sing before you can carry a single note in a paper bag — you’re a fraud.

We know someone who just wrote a book on manifesting the perfect relationship, based on a 10-year relationship with an alleged “soul mate” that she divorced two years ago. I don’t want to learn about how to have a thriving relationship from someone who can’t keep her own together.

We know someone else who was so fed up with the negative thoughts and emotions permeating every minute of every day that he decided to teach people how to stamp out negativity. First of all, he’s barking up the wrong tree — it’s not about getting rid of negativity. Life is about the balance of yin and yang, up and down, black and white.

Secondly, he was trying to to be the “anti-negativity guru” while struggling daily with the nonsense he was preaching. Now he’s decided to go back to what he does best — interviewing the TRUE experts in his original field of expertise.

We also know someone who’s been complaining that he can’t make money “selling stuff” in the “manifestation and metaphysics” niche, which he calls his “true passion”, so he keeps promoting products about internet marketing to pay the bills, even though he hates it.

Hey, I wouldn’t buy anything from him either! If the guy can’t make manifestation tools and techniques work for himself — he can’t manifest a success, or a way to make money from his “true passion” — then why should I take his word on the effectiveness of any manifestation product, whether his own or someone else’s?

Seriously… if HE can’t make that product work for himself, what can I possibly learn from him?

And the truth is, most people can smell that type of fraud from miles away… hence the reason he can’t make money in that niche.

I’ve heard cynic after cynic complain that “the only people who make money with the law of attraction are people who sell products about the law of attraction,” or “the only people making money with internet marketing are those teaching others how to do internet marketing,” but that’s so off base.

While there are some people making money selling information about the law of attraction (or any other aspect of personal development), they’ve usually got experience manifesting other things and successes first.

While there are some people making money teaching others how to make money online, they’ve usually had success selling other stuff online first — and can use themselves as case studies.

Anyone teaching what they don’t know usually gets ferreted out pretty quickly, because they smell like a fraud, and nobody’s going to be able to know, like and trust them.

The bottom line is, congruency is required in anything you do if you want people to feel the passion, integrity and good-heartedness you possess.

If you’re trying to dress a poodle up like a Great Dane, you’re not gonna get very far… ’cause that dog don’t hunt.

But if you’ve got a Saint Bernard with a barrel around his neck, rescuing his 60th victim, you’ll always be showered with gratitude… and lots more opportunity to serve.

Keep Unwrapping the Mysteries of Life!

12 comments to “Are You a Visionary or a Fraud?”
12 comments to “Are You a Visionary or a Fraud?”
  1. Now that is a frank and straightforward clarification that helped me to identify a glitch in a relationship I was having with a man who is broke in money, but rich in relationships in social networking. I wondered why I had attracted someone who could not manifest his rent, and yet was writing about finding solutions to problems. And then I saw him as my mirror, and looked at what was false in myself, and I saw that I could not be a relationship coach if my own relationships didn’t work. But what I COULD coach is in the area of forgiveness, and overcoming obstacles, breaking through and persisting despite all evidence to the contrary, and miraculous healing. Because that is true for me. Thanks for your clarity and authenticity. It demonstrated my next path, and abundance shines all around me. I am blessed, and I am courageous, and I am honest. And I am NOT a fraud! The wonderful thing is neither is he, and, once I forgave him, and myself for holding him as a fraud, he moved into a place of wonderful abundance and momentum. Divine Spirit works in wondrous ways, indeed.

  2. Sound like you have spent some time at Landmark Education.

    [Heather’s REPLY]:

    I’m not familiar enough with them to comment on WHY you might think so… but in any case, you’re incorrect.

    I don’t get my thoughts, opinions or observations from specific places of education, whether that be an institute, a book, a DVD or what-have-you. The truth is, I’ve spent a lot of time living, thinking, questioning, and observing other people… and therefore forming opinions firsthand.


  3. Most of our thinking is one sided and we never realize that the coin has another side, too. But being honest in our understanding has a value. At least then people will realize that we are NOT a fraud. That’s good enough to be a human being.

  4. WOW! You took my thoughts right outta my head. Everything you say is 100% Truth. Thank you so much for sharing your truth with us.

  5. Heather, I quite agree with you.

    One problem with all the “frauds” out there, is that when someone comes along as a “visionary” in your definition, people are likely to think you are a fraud anyway.

    I work in the hotel industry, almost only in luxury hotels. I have worked out how to create a kind of guest experience that goes beyond the regular 5-stars level by working through people’s hearts. It took me years to do it. It creates a very spiritual guest experience.

    Does it work? … Yes. As an experiment I helped a hotel in India to win a World Travel Award in the “World’s Leading Hotel” category. It has won it 2 years in a row now. The World Travel Awards are the Oscars of the travel industry. It was the first time an Indian hotel had won one of these awards, and the Minister of Tourism made a big fuss about it. This is not the first hotel I have helped to win an award for Best in the World. It is easy to do, but you just have to ditch the usual methods that the hotel industry uses. That’s all.

    My point is this. When I write articles on the most well-known hotel industry website, hardly anybody takes any notice about the approach, which I now call Spiritual Hospitality. I tell hotel group corporate offices, but they don’t care and probably don’t believe it can be done. Basically, the ideas are too far ahead of their time.

    As a result, if a certain bio-fertilizer deal goes through in the next 1-2 months, I’m just going to turn my back on the hotel industry and go into agriculture. It’s a shame as no hotel has to have the spirit it does.

    The frauds can get more people to listen to them.

  6. I’ve lately sort of gone in the direction of selling crystals and giving energy advice to some people. I felt unworthy of that position because I am still dealing with my own issues and still coming to terms with the past and letting go, however, I have come a heck of a long way since a two years ago and learnt a great deal of thing’s. So I guess you don’t have to be perfect with whatever you end up doing, I indicated to my client that I wasn’t and still had thing’s I was dealing with.

    I feel honesty in these situations is the best modality, nobody deserves to pay for a service from someone who claims to be all high up there who relly isn’t. I enjoyed this article very much so. Thank You.

    – Vahid.

  7. You nailed it again, Heather!

    Just the idea of trying to pose as an expert at something I don’t know anything about has always felt wrong to me. You’re right, being in the process of investigating something is the minimum for taking others along for the journey, and real expertise is a must for being a “teacher”.

  8. Peter, you sound like your areas of interest/ expertise complement mine, with possbly a little overlap – I’d love to learn more about what you’re doing.If you’d like to correspond about this, the address is webmaven [at] biosphericresonance [dot] com . I’d be much honored.

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