(Reprinted with permission from my book, The Web Marketing Advisor).
From a young age, we are appointed.
Appointed by our parents … old enough to stay home alone. Appointed by our institutions … educated enough to enter the full-time work force. Appointed by our employers … responsible enough for promotion.
Important question: Have you become mentally conditioned by all this external appointment?
Have you given your power to someone or something outside of yourself?
Could this be the invisible Great Wall of China that’s blocking you from rocketing toward your goals and reaching your full potential?
For most of us, to one degree or another, the answer is “yes.” Take a look at this note I received from one of my subscribers earlier this week:
“I have a few questions re: your material …
1. Is this setup as a correspondence study course or is it just ideas to use for implementation? Does the material guide you on how to write good, strong copy? Is there anyone who critiques you on your assignments? Or is it all up to one’s own imagination and assumptions?
2. How does your material compare to the American Writers and Artists Institute – 6 figure copywriting? Or to the Institute of Copywriting course? Or to any other course out there … ?
3. Is it possible to become a successful copywriter without prior experience in finance or marketing? Without a college degree in journalism, finance, marketing …?
4. Do your materials also include how to improve one’s writing skills, language usage …?
“I’m very much interested in the field of copywriting. I believe I have a flair with words as well as a good way of expression. However, I’ve done extensive research online as well as perused the copywriting opportunities available, and I keep coming to the same conclusion.
“It seems the only way to truly succeed in the copywriting field is to have an accredited history in finance, journalism, or/and marketing as well as experience in the aforementioned fields. Being familiar with Web design and computer graphics doesn’t seem to hurt either. Many accomplished copywriters have refuted the idea of being able to master copywriting and succeed in the field by simply taking a copywriting course whether online or by correspondence (which doesn’t even seem to be what you’re offering).
“Therefore I question you, as well as other courses, which claim that after completing your/their material one can become a successful copywriter and earn …
“How can you distort reality just in order to sell your product or promote your course? How can you convince people of unbelievable, unattainable goals? Is this another marketing gimmick? Since you guys are the masters of copywriting, perhaps you’re pulling the wool over the consumer’s eyes and convincing them of twisted truths … all for your benefit. UNLESS … perhaps you can convince me otherwise.”
If it were not for the rather cheeky last paragraph, I might have sent this woman a constructive response. As it was, I simply replied: “Thanks for writing. With all due respect, I don’t think this is for you.” Who needs customers like this?
I can only imagine what kind of “research” could have possibly led her to these erroneous conclusions. I mean honestly, “an accredited history in finance, journalism, and/or marketing as well as experience in the aforementioned fields.” I can’t think of a more onerous liability, can you? Where do these self-defeating delusions come from?
I’ll tell you …
From a young age, powerful forces within society condition you to undervalue who and what you are — so you will look to them for your own self-worth — so you will look to them for validation, power, and permission, through the appointments they bestow on you.
“A man should learn to detect and watch for that gleam of light which flashes across his mind from within, more than the luster of the firmament of bards and sages” – Ralph Waldo Emerson
Yes, we have all been hypnotized into believing we are smaller than we really are. Just as a fishbowl keeps goldfish tiny … we have all to one extent or another been fooled into believing our value equals the size of our external appointments.
The question is not: Have you given your power to someone or something outside of yourself? But rather: How can you take it back?
Unlike a goldfish swimming around oblivious in a tank, you have a choice …
Power is an inside job. You do not need to import it from external sources. All you need do is peel away the lies you’ve been told — and went on to tell yourself — that are keeping you wading around in the kiddy pool of life.
Realize our school system, government, and industries reward dependency, NOT self-reliance … conformity, NOT innovation … slavery to the status quo, NOT fearless adventure into the unknown.
Aside from the 3Rs, (reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic) what you learn through formalized education is obsolete, outdated knowledge by the time you learn it. Worse, it is designed to prepare you to become a droid in a large vertically integrated company or institution the likes of which are disintegrating daily.
The result is the inevitable stunting of your initiative, creativity, and capacity for capitalist thinking. Naturally, you fail to appoint yourself captain of the myriad entrepreneurial opportunities around you. And then you wonder why external appointments elude you.
I hope this hasn’t made you cynical like my subscriber. She sees a band of rebels thumbing their noses at the mainstream, defining their own lives and prosperity on their own terms. And instead of becoming inspired and encouraged by this, she sees it as distorted reality, twisted truth — a marketing gimmick. How sad.
Please don’t limit your life with these kinds of hideous hallucinations. Expand your beliefs to encompass the life you were born for. Emerson said, “Do the thing, and you will have the power.” You don’t need anyone’s permission.
To be a master of your own reality — ACT LIKE ONE — starting today!
Assuming greatness is not phony. Unworthiness is the imposter.
If you want to accelerate your development, then stop putting off doing for learning. Smear yourself in the fray. Get your teeth kicked in by day on the mean marketing streets. And burn the midnight oil to make the next day better. You don’t need anyone to tell you you’re ready.
I’m convinced most people fail to get what they want out of life because they’re simply afraid to express their talents without external appointment.
They feel unworthy of asking for and accepting money in exchange for those talents without validation from some external authority.
And they fail to take bold action toward building their livelihood around those talents without external permission.
Instead, they spend their days doing things they don’t care about. They struggle financially. And they wither emotionally. All because they refuse to allow themselves to fearlessly follow their passions RIGHT NOW!
If you look at some of the most successful people in the world, you’ll see they became that way by taking a very different approach.
… Who told Steve Jobs to drop out of college and appoint himself MESSIANIC LEADER OF STONED GOOFBALL COMPUTER GEEKS EVERYWHERE in a crazy war against centralized computing and its overbearing, power hungry priesthood? A war they ultimately won. Had they not, you probably wouldn’t be reading this.
… Who told Andrew Carnegie — the son of a weaver — who started his career changing spools of thread in a cotton mill twelve hours a day for $1.20 a week that he should appoint himself CAPTAIN OF INDUSTRY?
… Who told Abraham Lincoln that with one year of a backwoods Kentucky education (reading, writing, and ciphering to the rule of three) he was qualified enough to be appointed Postmaster, and then Lawyer, and then Congressman, and then President, and then MILITARY COMMANDER IN CHIEF?
Nobody, that’s who, THEY JUST DID IT!
… And the rest is history.
So just do it!
Until next time, Good Selling!