Often it is difficult to tell what things out there are good for us and what are not. There are far too many snake oil salesman peddling their wares as if they were the answer to life itself. Yes, I realize there are good people out there too, but often they are like finding a needle in a haystack.
Years ago, I was working in the research department of a company. We had many outside vendors wishing to do business with the company. If they could get their product into our production, it meant a tremendous revenue source for them. It also gave them bragging rights because we were a leader in the industry and what we did carried a great deal of weight with other companies.
Unfortunately, I soon learned that at least 85% of what was presented to us did not stand up to testing. Each vendor had their data and research and tests, but even with all of this, most of them failed when we tested it in our system.
When it failed, these vendors would lash out at us in every way imaginable. The research data we would share with them from our tests were laughed at, mocked, ridiculed, and torn apart. It did not meet their intended goals of selling us the product and they wanted nothing to do with our findings.
I see the new age and medical worlds in the same way. They all come to you with the latest and greatest cure or device. Each one believes in what they say and they often have fancy write-ups to prove that their cure or device is 100% truthful, believable, and the answer. Some even show you science to back up what they are saying.
Like the vendors that came to me in the research job, most of the things out there fail. I will tell you that I am stating opinion and not fact here. I would not want to be classified as a snake oil salesman like so many others pushing pseudo-science. In all reality, very few things truly make a difference in our life even though we want to believe that our cure or device is the answer to God himself!
How can you tell what is right and good and helpful. After all, these companies are slick. They know how to position their product information so that you would think it is true. They are very believable. Yet, they do not stand the test of time. They tend to end up being nothing more than a fad and sometimes a very expensive fad.
Here would be my guidelines for helping to weed through some of the absolutely ridiculous cures and devices on the market. Please realize that it may be very difficult for you to fully judge a product, but before you spend your hard earned dollars, exhaust yourself checking them out. Look for the unflattering and negative reviews to compare and contrast against what the company or individual claims.
I also realize that not everything out there that is good can be backed up with hard facts. Sometimes there is something that works that has not been able to be tested fully, but tread into these waters with the utmost caution. If you don’t, you will fall into the quick sand.
15 Ways To Not Get Taken
#1 – Does It Take You Inside
By taking you inside, I mean is it something you can feel in your body while being connected to the mind. I don’t mean an emotion feeling or only a sensation that it gives you. I mean truly going in and connecting deep within yourself where the mind connects through the felt-sense of the body. Too many things are placebo and have us believing that they are doing something when there is absolutely no truth or science based evidence that they are.
#2 – Are The Research Studies Available
While I realize that research studies in science can be compromised and they often are by those who provide the funding, check out the research studies carefully. Make sure they are available. If they are not, then this is a major red flag that something may be based more on opinion, rather than true fact. I know every company, university, and organization will claim their research is solid, but if you analyze this carefully, you will understand the truth.
#3 – How Long Have They Been Around
While the length of time a business or individual have been in business is not an absolute indicator whether something works or not, it is good to know. There are too many things that just don’t make it very long in the healing world. The length of time they have been around is important to know. It is a guiding factor.
#4 – Is It MLM (Multi-Level Marketing)
I will tell you up front that I am not a fan of MLM. If you are, then we will have to agree to disagree. Too many things done through MLM just don’t pass the test of truth in my eyes. Often, there are people pushing these products that are only regurgitating what has been told to them. Sure, there may be some science and research that backs up a product, but most people in MLM’s have never taken time to fully study it. MLM is about sales and getting people to sign up, not necessarily helping others heal in a fully enlightened manner. I know I am harsh, but I speak from experience as a sucker that got drawn into these. If you tell me its MLM, I automatically find a way to excuse myself and say “good-bye”. I learned to ask people trying to get me into MLM’s two very basic questions. The first question is, “how long have you been doing it?” The second question is “how much have you made?” More often than not, they will tell you how much another person or their sponsor is making, but not that they have made tremendous amount of money and the reason they will give you is that they just started it. Just showing you fancy pictures and fact sheets is not proof that the MLM actually works!
#5 – Have You Tested Your Cure Fully?
If you decide to try it, have you tested it fully. I don’t mean just believing that your cure works, resulting in the placebo effect. It is too easy to believe that this expensive product or cure is healing us that we don’t really listen to the our inner voices telling us that it may not be true. I still remember one time that I thought someone had done healing bodywork on me, but it was after a length of time that I found out listening to the music CD that played that day was just as beneficial as if they were in the room.
#6 – All Positive Reviews Online
If you do a google search, you will quickly be able to see if there is any information and reviews online. Granted there are some people who are out to sabotage competitors, so keep this in mind. However, if every review is positive, one has to stop and take notice. All too often, these companies have affiliate marketers writing content on the internet and they don’t allow dissent. They want positive and glowing reviews even if it is not the truth. Maybe I am being a little bit harsh, but negative reviews will often get you kicked out of the affiliate program, thereby ending the revenue stream for that individual. It is a widespread and sad testament to the internet on healing, cures, and science. Just because there are multiple articles and reviews on the internet saying the same thing, don’t believe everything you read. Look for the negative reviews and then critique those for truth. They most likely will tell you much more than you can learn anywhere else.
#7 – How Expensive Is The Product?
I swear, every time I see these cures and devices that cost thousands of dollars, I want to go out and scream! If healing is a natural gift and part of the universe, why is it that someone needs to bankrupt themselves to get better. Sure, I understand that everyone needs to earn a living, but fancy cars and homes don’t make the practice human. The more expensive something is, the more of a red flag it throws up in my mind. I’m not saying, all cures and devices should be next to free, but when you see the high priced cost, let that be a red flag to dig deeper and check it out further.
#8 – Can Company Take Criticism?
All too often a company will say, “sure, ask us any question.” Unfortunately if you start asking the pointed questions that makes them feel uncomfortable, they get squeamish and run for cover. If they don’t do that, their go-to-moment is pointing you to the slick sales page that has been written up and asking you to just take their word for it. Do yourself a big favor and listen to how they deal with those questions that are difficult. Allow for them to not know how to answer the question, but if you stump them, they should by all means admit they don’t know.
#9 – No Such Thing As A Free Lunch
If someone is offering you a free lunch or dinner in exchange for you listening to their sales pitch, its a red flag. I’m not saying it is a bad thing, but its a sales pitch, not a fact based meeting. They are there to sell you on their product or cure. There is no such thing as a free lunch. I’ve been wined and dined so many times in my life listening to a sales pitch. In fact, one job we were told that if a company wanted to pitch something to you, the only time you could meet them in your busy schedule was over lunch or dinner.
#10 – Personal Experience
Personal experience is the strongest evidence of what a cure or product can do. Again, I’m not talking about the perceived placebo evidence, but fact based results. If the product heals broken legs, it should be clearly evident by other users that in fact their legs were healed. Be careful though of photos depicting these things because in this day and age of photoshop, too much can be manufactured. One way to look at this is if it worked on one person, can it be replicated to many more individuals? If it cannot 100% of the time, then there is most likely something missing in that cure.
#11 – Things Are Not Always What They Appear To Be
I remember on an episode of the Andy Griffith show, Aunt Bee had purchased some of Colonel Harvey’s Elixir which was a tonic that would fix any ailment. Aunt Bee and others took this tonic every day but in the end, it was basically some type of alcohol that got them tipsy. We can package things up and make all kinds of lights and bells and whistles but in the end, things are not always what they appear to be. I remember one boss I worked for that would tell me, “if you can make people believe it, it is true!” Unfortunately there are far too many gullible people and far too many snake oil salesman.
#12 Is There A Money Back – Guarantee (without all the steps)
Learning from experience, I got suckered into buying things that had a money back guarantee. While this should be with any product or device you buy, be very careful. I have seen several places that will give you the guarantee, but then they put so many ridiculous requirements on it that it almost makes it null and void. They make you jump through hoops to get your money back and it is designed to get people to give up. I have seen it happen all too often that they make the claim, but they won’t give you the details of what is required to get your money back until you have purchased the product. Don’t fall for this! Be careful and demand the guarantee in writing ahead of the purchase for your review, so that you can make sure you can get your money back.
#13 – Following their belief system
There are far too many in the medical and new age worlds that demand you follow their belief system. Sure, some of them have parts of the belief system backed up by science, but most of the time their beliefs are at the forefront. Science tries to answer questions but sometimes it does fall short as does a belief system. Be aware of what you are listening to and following. Does it pass the sniff test? Far too many things are based upon belief, rather than truth and evidence. This applies to the scientific and medical world as well as the new age world.
#14 – Does It Sound Too Good To Be True
Sometimes it just sounds too good to be true. There are so many things people are spreading around these days and they just make your eyes roll. I have to constantly bite my tongue because otherwise no one would want to speak to me. Common sense is lacking in so many products, devices, cures, and beliefs. It is also lacking in the scientific world. It is like we belly up to the bar and drink whatever is given to us. We just don’t question things and if we do, we don’t truly listen to our internal self. We ignore that which we question and gulp down that which someone screams is the truth.
#15 – Can You Cure, Heal, Help Yourself Without That Product Or Device Or Belief
All too often, we give up the power to heal our self to other people, products, devices or beliefs. We don’t see that healing comes from within our body, not from something that someone is trying to sell us. Yes, there are good people out there doing ethical healing work, but there are far too many that are not. I believe there is truth in all things, with some things having far more truth than others. Instead of accepting everything someone tells us as the gospel truth, try to find the nugget of truth within what they say and see if you can use it to help heal yourself. You might be amazed at what you can do without some device or product or belief system.
As I write this, I fully realize that science sometimes has a difficult time proving things at this particular moment in time. It does not necessarily and automatically imply that the science or cure or healing modality is pseudo-science like some would have you to believe. However, in this case, one must be extra careful and vigilant to know that the placebo effect is not the guiding principal. If you cannot obtain hard science, then run a very controlled study to determine if what you are saying is true.
All too often we make claims that we think are true, but in all reality they are no more tested than an unknown substance. Its easy to regurgitate information, but just because someone else tells us what is true, it does not make it truth. Healing and cures are sometimes founded upon paradigms, not necessarily hard truth while the naysayers of course will not accept anything that doesn’t fit into their crucible. It is a double edged sword.
My overall point is that if you are going to promote something, do it based upon evidence. Hopefully you can base it upon science, but if not, you need to have a very extensive controlled study to show to others that what you are saying, is what is really going on! Testing it on yourself may not be enough to be the prophet of the healing cures.
Keep in mind that just because someone is a slick and smooth talker and presents themselves as an expert, they may not know as much as it appears. Often the more silent ones are the ones that are best to listen to because they generally will give you the more straight and true answer.
May science one day advance to the point where it can prove or give credibility to things that are unseen or not understood at this time. May we all work together with that goal in mind, rather than just downplaying anything and everything that doesn’t fit into our healing paradigm.