The Business of Self-Help

As of this moment, there are 609,171 Self-help books on That’s more than half a million books on how to be happier, healthier and wealthier. Yet in a wealthy nation like the US, there are an increasing number of mental and physical illnesses.

One would assume with technology advancement, increased living standards and high volume of self-help education that we would experience much healthier and happier lives and enjoy a decrease in diseases. This hasn’t been the case as we have seen more anxiety, obesity and stress-related diseases throughout first world nations.

Why hasn’t this business of self-improvement worked the way it was intended? Because it’s a business. Businesses (not all) are fundamentally based on profit, growth and longevity. What is their motivation at the end of the day? Is it to help eradicate or reduce disease and increase health and happiness? What happens to the demand for these products and these entities when they have achieved their goal of helping us become happier and healthier?

Or is it our own fault that we cannot achieve Dystopia and require constant hand-holding and nurturing? Maybe that’s what they want us to believe. That we are somehow flawed, or not trying hard enough or doing something wrong. Perhaps we need to attend yet another seminar, buy another book, subscribe to another get rich program. By opening our wallets, we have made a commitment to ourselves and the people around us that we are taking action to become somebody important.

Some of us will eventually strike it rich, some of us will continue trying, making someone else rich in the process. For the tiny percentage who do eventually succeed, think of the endless hours of hard work, careful planning and sacrifices. No one got rich from collecting piles of self-help books and attended seminars alone. Those who sell information have one goal in mind, and it’s not the same goal you have.


Neo B. Concio, Author: “The Millionaire Employee: Simple Steps to Freedom” (ironic, but not – available for free as well – contact me.)