Magical Thinking

Seth Godin's blog on Avoiding Magical Thinking struck a chord. This happens all the time! Just think of the diet industry, the beauty industry, the "do this" and they will come business philosophy ... magical thinking abounds.

I think it must be a human trait to find the easy, no self-discipline needed,  sure thing "fix."

I see this as a business owner, for example. If I take "this" sales course, I'll land more clients than I can handle; if I sign up for a training session of writing LinkedIn profiles, I can charge clients $600 per profile; if I join a particular group of career professionals, I am bound to leverage the collective expertise and grow my business beyond my wildest dreams and earn over $100,000! Mmhmm. If it sounds too good to be true ..

And I see this amongst job hunters. Depending on what they've been reading they may latch onto an idea, and give it "magical" powers. If my resume is one page, they say, it will work; if I send out another 100 resumes, I'll land an interview; if I copy my friend's resume, I'll get a job.

Ignored are the facts: there is no "one-size-fits-all" resume length. A resume that hasn't landed an interview after 100 submissions is highly unlikely to land a decent interview in the next 100 submissions, and copying a friend's resume, even if s/he did land an interview doesn't guarantee anything, except that your resume won't be authentic to your own strengths, skills, and accomplishments.

There is no success without lots of hard work, learning, applying, investigating, self-reflection, and the investment of time and money. If the goal is important, that's what it takes! Even I have to admit this and I've been accused of living life with "rose coloured" glasses!

I do take courses, I do belong to professional groups, and I do invest in my business, but it's all incremental progress and improvement; truly there is no magic path to incredible success. However, without making some changes, without realizing when it's time to seek more in the way of self-study or professional help, no "magic" will happen! Things will stay precisely as they are.

Magic is the stuff of fiction, and although miracles or random acts can happen, they are improbable, not the norm. Relying on the improbable defies logic and stymies success!