Over the past few years, I've been following a lot of influencers on the internet. And I've come to personal conclusions and decided to filter input radically.

I'm an independent thinker but even as one, I can still be influenced sometimes, and that's why I'm very careful about what I let in.

I hadn't planned to write this blog post today but another blog post inspired me in doing so. It started with a comment and grew so long that it had to become a thing of its own.

The topic of the blog post was about exploring what one truly wants and verify if it's time to give something up. Especially business-related. A critical issue.

The blogger mentioned two superstar influencers, both with bestsellers under their belt.

I hadn't such a good feeling about one of them. 

The problem with the concept of falling in love with an idea instead of the thing itself. 

PS: It's not what you think

One of the influencers thinks that it's problematic when people fall in love with ideas or with the idea of building a business itself, without realizing they don't want to do it in the first place — an argumentation built on his own experience.

Of course, he can't build it on anything else than his own experience, neither can you or I. We're not omniscient.

But even if his approach sounds intellectually reasonable, to me anyway, it sounds dead wrong. I've heard this kind of argumentation from different people, multiple times, and I'm going to explain why I think it won't get you anywhere.

But first, let me share something radical:

I refuse to listen to people who leave me under the impression they're unhappy.

I don't care how much money they make and how many accolades they get, if I doubt for just a second their state of happiness or the purity of their intention, I won't take life lessons from them.

I don't take life lessons from people who blame and shame others, especially in public.

I won't take advice from people who aren't self-aware.

I won't take advice from people who talk behind other people's backs.

I won't take advice from people who project even a hint of their issues on their followers and aren't even aware of it.

I won't take advice from healers, therapists, and you name it, who haven't their shit together and think they have.

I might listen to them when it comes to understanding marketing, or what plugin I should choose and why - and even that became critical - but beyond that, I'll be careful and pay attention to what they say and how they say it.

And so should you. You know why?

Because unhappy people never have your best interest in mind.

They have their own interest and problems in mind.

Of course we're all work in progress, but the difference is if you are self-aware, or not.

Listen to your common sense and your intuition instead.

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To go back to the influencer example, the problem I have with what he says is that I don't believe for a fraction of a second that he's happy. I might be projecting something on him, but the way he tells things, and what he talks about, makes him very suspicious to me.

I've followed him 2 or 3 years ago and stopped doing so, for precisely that reason. He might be a sincere and smart guy, but I think there's another deeper layer below that I don't want to be influenced by.

The fascinating thing is that his argumentation is basically the same as the argumentation of another influencer, except for that coming from him, it feels heavy and depressing. Coming from her, it feels light and playful.

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Pay close attention to what your brain consumes.

I pay close attention to what influencers put out into the world, and how they do it.

And I no longer believe in this concept that you automatically have to suffer for a long time to gain meaningful insights. Nor do I think that you need years of therapy to find your way. Sometimes therapy does more damage than he does well. If you haven't the right therapist, or if the therapy format isn't the right one for you.

And it's not because you've spent years doing something, that it's going to lead somewhere, or you're going to be good at it.

Experience ≠ Insight

Some people have a lot of experience and have learned absolutely nothing from it.

In the meantime, I firmly believe that you can change things quickly, with joy and ease. We've been told for so long that everything has to be heavy and painful that we tend to believe it because it sounds plausible (Yes, I'm guilty of it too).

And I know the quote going through your mind right now might be, "Tell a lie long enough, and it becomes the truth."

Since I don't want to spend the next two hours finding out who exactly wrote this (Spoiler, it's not the Nazi propagandist, Goebbels) and what the exact words were, because it's not the point, I won't attribute the quote to anyone.

Being brain-washed is easy but it has terrible consequences.

The problem with smart influencers who want to open your eyes to some truth they think are universal, or whatever the heck they have for an intention, is that they leave a bitter flavor in your mouth.

Depending on how receptive (sensitive) you are, it might stay with you, and continue to corrupt your thoughts and feelings for a long time, especially if it's intellectually convincing.

To go back to the argumentation of asking if you're in love with an idea of something instead of the thing itself, it resonates with a theory by French anthropologist, René Girard, called Mimetic Desire. 

In a nutshell, Mimetic Desire, is the desire, for one thing, careers, lifestyle, based on the desire of others you admire - or who are admired by society.

Which is inevitable. 

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When thinking too much becomes a handicap.

Besides, why I'm not surprised that this theory came from a French intellectual by the way?

I'm French, and I know how many French people enjoy breaking certitudes, especially if they make you happy.

It's one of the negative aspects of the cultural heritage from the intellectual liberation of the Age of Enlightenment. 

As if being pessimistic and suspicious would make you automatically smarter than your peers.

The philosopher, René Descartes is indirectly responsible for the expression "being Cartesian" as being rational. Something lots of French are tremendously proud of.  

If you believe in something that can't be proved, you're irrational, aka stupid. The more intellectual and miserable you are, the better human being you are.

Meanwhile, I prefer to follow the ones who leave me under the impression of being satisfied.

Questioning the "why" you want something too much can block you instead of moving you forward. Sometimes what you need is just to follow things you feel drawn to.

To give you an example, I've  waited years until I started my projects (blogs, books, and so much more) because I kept asking myself, "Is this my real desire? Or did I get the idea from someone else? "This permanent questioning of my wishes, by the way, does come from someone else.

I do have an advice: Don't play that game.

The uncomfortable truth of doubting your own desires, is that it can't be proved nor refuted through thinking.

If someone starts to fuck up with your mind telling you don't really want what you want, where does the madness ends?

It can be a dangerous game to doubt yourself all the time because you are sending the following message to yourself: 

"What you want and feel doesn't count because it's not real."

If you permanently question your thoughts and feelings, you won't get clarity but even more confusion.

At some point, you won't be able to trust yourself anymore.

And let me clear here:

You're not an island, nor an unwritten piece of paper, and where your desires come from, at the end of the day, is entirely irrelevant.

It doesn't matter. 

I no longer ask anyone if I should do this or that. Rarely friends, never the family, and not even experts, because none of them have any idea of what I should or shouldn't do.

Not because they're idiots, but because they aren't me. They have an idea of what I should do, who I might be, and what I'm capable of, depending on their value and how they filter information.

But they'll never be right. Because it's THEIR TRUTH. Not a universal formula.

Try asking 20 people; you'll get 20 different answers.

Except if everybody tells you you're an asshole, maybe you should look deeper into it but otherwise:

Stop the madness.

If it doesn't resonate, if you have a hint of a doubt, let it go.

Until then, much love and courage!

About the Author Martha Sigargök-Martin

Hi, I'm Martha, Mindset Coach and French Expat living in Germany, dedicated to help you squeeze the best out of you so that you can go for what you want.

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