Not Miss Cleo - it was a small, independently owned hotline located in Boulder, CO, called M0rningst@r Psychics. I was the customer service manager.
It was one of the most weirdly dysfunctional workplaces I have ever experienced.
― gonna give her the old fuquay-varina (Jenny), Thursday, 2 February 2012 14:50 (3 years ago) Permalink
I'm sorry, she is not a life coach. She is an "@uth3nt1c pr0sp3r1ty c0@ch."
― gonna give her the old fuquay-varina (Jenny), Thursday, 2 February 2012 14:52 (3 years ago) Permalink
and i think that in some ways, a certain sort of educated and non-shammy "life coaching" is interesting and works for some people, but this is, well, something else...xp
haha a friend of mine was a phone sex worker when she finished high school and worked next to the psychic phone line workers. the stories she told me. so dysfunctional. but oh the easy access to good/bad drugs.
― obliquity of the ecliptic (rrrobyn), Thursday, 2 February 2012 14:53 (3 years ago) Permalink
I don't want to derail, but it's kind of relevant, but it wasn't like a phone in from home kind of place. They had a really intense interview and selection process for the psychics, who then had to undergo training in the methods espoused by the owners. Customer service rep's job was to talk to people and tell them who was reading at that time and use our psychic abilities to make a good match between the caller and the psychic, including telling the person to call back at another time to talk to somebody who might not have been on shift.
The two owners totally ganged up on one coworker was sick a lot (she was just kind of sickly and allergic to everything), put her in one of the reading rooms, and basically took turns berating her for being so negative and bringing her sickly negativity into the office, and told her that she was sick so often because she was negative and drew all the sickness to her and, by proxy, to everyone she worked with.
― gonna give her the old fuquay-varina (Jenny), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:03 (3 years ago) Permalink
It's like... all of these elements on their own could be functional, but some people need a lot more direction than "hey, I could do yoga" or "hey, I could use a way to figure out how to organize my professional life or emotions" and it's like a little life view and motivation wrapped up
so basically it's the same as people who are way too into organized religion. kind of has the same smell as megachurches where all your social events are at or through the church
― mh, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:03 (3 years ago) Permalink
Jenny, that's kind of like the obvious "you're not doing what we like / you're not with the program: you have negative energies!" formula in a nutshell!
― mh, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:04 (3 years ago) Permalink
Mordy, you obviously know more about Landmark than I do, but my other roommates and i used to have house meetings about how we were worried this roommate of mine had joined a cult. because:
1) she was spending a lot of money on Landmark classes2) she had begun speaking in a hyper-technical space alien sounding jargon3) she was constantly trying to recruit us to come with her.
i believe you that a lot of what the lectures were for was personal relationships, because she was constantly trying to use her Landmark-isms on us, but it was still creepy and seemingly substance-less in execution. at the time i remember thinking that Landmark seemed to be preying on this girl's social anxiety.
― horseshoe, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:06 (3 years ago) Permalink
lol, i'm such an ilx outlier. i'd say like at least 65% of my social life goes through my local synagogue (even worse, a chabad house!) xp
And yeah, horseshoe, obviously it's not a great experience for a lot of people. For one, you've gotta figure that the kind of person who would take a class like this to begin with is going to be in a particular place in their life. Fwiw, to lead introduction courses, or teach seminars, etc, you have to prove a very high level of personal success (in economic/health/relationship areas) in your life (generally to become a Landmark Forum leader -- the company is employee-owned by all Forum leaders -- you have to have complete financial independence -- or at least used to. I don't know if you still do). But anyone can take the course. Well, not anyone. If you have a history of mental illness I believe your psychiatrist has to sign off on your forms. I do know a number of ppl who lied on their applications that they don't have a history of mental illness tho.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:09 (3 years ago) Permalink
One thing a lot of participants in the seminars do, that is discouraged in the courses and obviously really dumb, is try to Landmark their friends. They tell you to share authentically about your life and be honest about your relationships, but not to analyze your friends using the paradigms of the course. But of course everyone leaves the course and starts telling all their friends about "enrollment," and "authenticity," and "creating possibility," and "running rackets," and "winning formulas/strong suits." There is a highly specific jargon, and I'm not sure that it has value per se, but it certainly has more value when contextualized + discussed + unpacked (lol unpacked- academia another one of my cults) than it does when you're enthusing about how "enrollment is causing a possibility to be present for another such that they are touched, moved and inspired by that possibility" to your roommate that you really want to come to your "graduation" Tuesday night but just wants to read their book and not hear you overshare about your weekend.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:12 (3 years ago) Permalink
Mordy, you don't seem like a person who uncritically follows anything, though.
― mh, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:13 (3 years ago) Permalink
omar/horseshoe: i am unfamiliar with landmark!!!! enlighten me!!
― ⚓ (gr8080), Thursday, February 2, 2012 3:05 AM (6 hours ago) Bookmark Flag Post Permalink
mordy mentioned it but landmark used to be EST which was HUGE in the 70s and is in many ways the granddaddy of all this shit
― lag∞n, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:14 (3 years ago) Permalink
I critically follow everything, lol. But yeah -- I'm not trying to paint an uncritical picture of Landmark, just trying to add some nuance + historical context.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:15 (3 years ago) Permalink
My experience with people who got into Landmark - blessedly limited - is on track with horseshoe's.
YES. I would be shocked if at least half of the people I worked with didn't go on to be hardcore Landmarkians/Awesomefest attendees. They were basically living The Secret before The Secret was even a thing. Actually at the time I think the Celestine Prophecies was the bullshit, dumbed-down pseudospiritual handbook du jour.
I did, however, take a lot of Tarot reading classes and it's nice to have a skill to fall back on.
― gonna give her the old fuquay-varina (Jenny), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:16 (3 years ago) Permalink
The purpose of est was "to transform one's ability to experience living so that the situations one had been trying to change or had been putting up with, clear up just in the process of life itself."
― horseshoe, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:16 (3 years ago) Permalink
Is that supposed to make sense?
― gonna give her the old fuquay-varina (Jenny), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:17 (3 years ago) Permalink
Also, I don't want to sound like I'm blaming the participants and letting the business off-the-hook. I fully think the business is responsible for the kinds of participants it attracts, and responsible to deal with them ethically and responsibly once allowing them to take their courses. I'm just pointing out that these kinds of businesses are always going to attract a particular group of participants. For instance, I don't think it's possible to take a Landmark course and go crazy because of the course. I think it's possible to start with a precarious mental situation and then have it degrade by taking a course. But I also studied Kabbalah + Chassidic philosophy for three years and met ppl who experienced psychotic episodes from that as well.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:18 (3 years ago) Permalink
but is the course worthwhile in any way?
― horseshoe, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:19 (3 years ago) Permalink
Let me translate? The stuff that you've been trying to change, or the shitty things you've been just suffering with - they will clear up without actually addressing them directly, just by changing your perspective. A huge part of the model (which IIRC Erhard got directly from Hubbard and was probably responsible for their rift and for Scientology trying to defame and then later kill Erhard) is that resisting things causes them to persist, and what is actually required is a contextual shift. That context shift is generally supposed to be creating a possibility -- generally something life-affirming and positive for your community. The idea is that you throw yourself into good works and the shitty stuff will disappear.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:21 (3 years ago) Permalink
fwiw i would not have characterized my former college roommate as mentally unstable, before or even during the Landmark thing. she was odd and sort of bullheaded but she seemed pretty okay, honestly. i guess that could have been an elaborate front, but i don't know.
― horseshoe, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:21 (3 years ago) Permalink
the main diff between the current milieu and landmark or w/e motivation seminars of old is the internet, like est/landmark is this huge org w/curriculum and and a marketing budget and whatnot but w/the internet you can just throw yr own shit out and see if it sticks, which is obv lol m/l how the internet has effected other industries, but i think w/this one which is a marketplace of ideas it has created this strange dynamic where everyone is an aspiring teacher, its just a bunch of teachers trying to teach each other, they make noises abt being students too but theres this hardly concealed undercurrent of ambition to dominate, and everyone is just sort of talking over each other in this inane gibberish, its v sad!
― lag∞n, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:22 (3 years ago) Permalink
xp to horseshoe -- idk, I thought it was for me. I'm not going to plug it though. I'm way more fascinated by the political stuff -- like why Erhard had to flee the country and the whole network of mass encounter groups that were exploding in the 70s (and which obviously stuff like Mindvalley is the child of).
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:22 (3 years ago) Permalink
Back to Mindvalley briefly -- I was looking at their website and they remind me of Entertainment720.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:24 (3 years ago) Permalink
mindvalley is my fav name for anything, really disappointed i didnt come up w/it myself
― lag∞n, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:25 (3 years ago) Permalink
Wonder if these businesses are designed specifically to attract those types of people. When people are looking for help and guidance they're vulnerable, and some people when they're vulnerable are very suggestible or at the worst looking to lose themselves into something ... don't know much about Landmark itself, but you get people who can be easily exploited. Makes me sick to think about.
Rethinking your context about stuff is a good idea ... reminds me of Buddhism or even 7 Habits/Dale Carnegie kinda stuff, and totally appeals to common sense. But even that can be a hook all depending on how it's used.
― Spectrum, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:26 (3 years ago) Permalink
mindvalley is v arrested development-y
― horseshoe, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:28 (3 years ago) Permalink
ok can we stop being analytical and go back to finding awesome craziness to link?
― mh, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:28 (3 years ago) Permalink
life coach FAQ
― the parable is the parable of the (Lamp), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:29 (3 years ago) Permalink
Interesting btw how Tony Robbins has shifted from sketchy/cult-y to more the TED Talk style of self-improvement.
― Burritos are one of the things I'm nostalgic about!!! (Eazy), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:34 (3 years ago) Permalink
I had a roommate who was really into Landmark. Mostly it seemed like she had never reached an adult level of emotional function, and Lmark was showing her how to grow up. It was kind of like remedial emotional life skills, or at least that's what she was getting out of it and coming home to talk about.
It seemed like kind of dumb obvious shit to me, but she was a nice person who meant well and had had a lot of bad/violent things happen to her, and been poor and without options. Considering all of that, she had kind of made a success of herself, and she looooooved Landmark.
― one little aioli (Laurel), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:36 (3 years ago) Permalink
Mostly it seemed like she had never reached an adult level of emotional function
tbf this describes like 90% of the human beings i interact with on a daily basis on ilx and in real life.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:37 (3 years ago) Permalink
lol there are some outlier TED Talks that are suspicious
― mh, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:38 (3 years ago) Permalink
I happen to know some people on ilx and irl too, and when I say that she was emotionally dysfunctional/unlearned, I mean in comparison to the other people I have known.
― one little aioli (Laurel), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:45 (3 years ago) Permalink
Located at the base of Fuck Mountain.
― gonna give her the old fuquay-varina (Jenny), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:46 (3 years ago) Permalink
yeah there are definitely some dubious TED talks...xp
― obliquity of the ecliptic (rrrobyn), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:47 (3 years ago) Permalink
ted is generally dubious imho
― lag∞n, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:48 (3 years ago) Permalink
just the whole culture
― lag∞n, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:49 (3 years ago) Permalink
This is such high end motivational stuff. I am really interested in the low end -- like this class by Alan Salami, LCSW
Want to learn how to talk to anyone at anytime and make a good impression. Are your fears of rejection in your way? Come learn how to:o Overcome your fearso Feel good about yourself and what you have to sayo Project self-confidenceo Start and continue conversationsWe will practice self-image building and power communication skills. Alan Salami LCSW is an NLP Master Practitioner and Psychotherapist. He specializes in assisting people to learn new mental skills to transform their lives. Mat. Fee: $10
― La Lechera, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:49 (3 years ago) Permalink
Start and continue conversations
lol, fair enough. I was just trying to make the point that humans in general kinda suck at basic emotional competencies, but that's probably a discussion for another thread.
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:50 (3 years ago) Permalink
o Feel good about yourself and what you have to say
― lag∞n, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:50 (3 years ago) Permalink
Alan Salami LCSW is an NLP Master Practitioner and Psychotherapist.
first glance thought this said Alan Salami LCSW is an NLP Master Practitioner and Psychobabblist.
The business development/futurism/positivity/self improvement axis is a slippery slope.
guys check this out, specifically the course titles that are of the form "If I'm X then how come I'm not rich/famous"
― mh, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:52 (3 years ago) Permalink
Pleased to see local ChILX hero Alan Salami itt.
― gonna give her the old fuquay-varina (Jenny), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:53 (3 years ago) Permalink
i think that might be the practical philosophy stuff i used to see advertised on MTA a lot. certainly something like that
― Mordy, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:53 (3 years ago) Permalink
These are not quite the same, but the format of:Listen to genuine experts speak in broad, motivational terms about their fields->You are going to get some sort of insights and start your own business or come up with a revolutionary idea
― mh, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:54 (3 years ago) Permalink
While we're at it, how about this place?!
this is gonna be lol hueg
― La Lechera, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:54 (3 years ago) Permalink
lol those practical philosophy ads xp
― lag∞n, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:54 (3 years ago) Permalink
That's Iowa btw. AKA Utopia.
― La Lechera, Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:55 (3 years ago) Permalink
I think that one that's always on the train is...another culty movement...energy manipulation, kind of...shoot WHAT is it called??
― one little aioli (Laurel), Thursday, 2 February 2012 15:55 (3 years ago) Permalink
Founded by a lady named...Mary??