Career

2. Toxic Positivity: NEVER Let People of Influence Tell You This!

September 13, 2020

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What’s up guys?! We’re back with another episode of #TheBoujeeBossUpPodcast, and today I’m debunking a HUGE myth that most of us (myself included), have fallen victim to.

The first encounter I’ve had with this form of toxic positivity was about 3 ½ years ago when I joined a multi-level marketing, or MLM company…that’s a whole other story for another day, but what I will say is that it was an eye-opener to the faulty sides of business for sure.

So, let’s backtrack a little and define what exactly “toxic positivity” means. Toxic positivity can be defined as “the excessive and ineffective overgeneralization of a happy, optimistic state across all situations. The process of toxic positivity results in the denial, minimization, and invalidation of the authentic human emotional experience.” (The Psychology Group)

Still a little lost?

Let me give you an example.

Something that I’ve come across waaaayyy too many times is seeing well-known entrepreneurs or public figures tell people that they “don’t want it bad enough” when it comes to those people not buying their offers.

What is the “it” these people of influence are referencing, you might ask?

“It” could be success, money, weight loss, a loving relationship, essentially anything related to whatever product or service they’re selling.

In my own experience, “it” was success and money as an entrepreneur. I know I said that I would save the MLM story for another day, but I really feel like this is one of the best examples of what toxic positivity looks like in real time, so I’m going to elaborate on this topic a little further.

Now, let me just say, I wasn’t recruited by a distributor, I actually saw a friend having some success and reached out on my own free will to join. Obviously, as with all MLM’s, there was an initial fee to join and a monthly fee to stay active, but I didn’t think too much about that because I’ve always been one to invest in myself, if I see the potential to grow.

See, the alluring thing about MLM’s is that they market their companies as, “making money from your phone, using whatever schedule you want.” They promise financial and personal freedom. They play on your pain points. And then, once they’ve got you all riled up, ready to change your life, they drop the fees on you.

Now, let me just say once again, I do believe that you have to invest to scale if you want to live a better life; nothing comes free at the end of the day.

However, what I’m about to share is where many people go wrong. Let’s say perhaps, that someone doesn’t have the money to invest.

This is where the “you don’t want it bad enough” speech comes in. You’ll often hear, “Well none of us had the money, but we found the money to invest so we could start creating a better life.”

How many of you have heard that before?!

And then once I actually joined, oh man did the real tea start flowing.

It went from, “You can work around your life’s events” to “If you’re not working every free moment you have, you are lazy and ‘don’t want it bad enough’”.

Every excuse was a bad excuse.

Your kid having a birthday party?

You’ll make it up later, you need to be on this zoom call.

You sick?

You need to push through that to meet the sales goal for this month.

You pregnant?

Congratulations, that’s the perfect way to recruit other moms. (No lie, I’ve literally seen a top distributor in my former MLM company posting about said company from her hospital bed. Like sis…you’re not even stitched up yet, you deserve to rest.)

Just a whole hot mess.

This may not be your reality, but how many times have you had someone tell you that you need their help, their product, their service, in order to achieve success? Listen, I’m all for going hard for your brand, but that’s a load of bull.

Their way is not the only way, and anyone who says that it is shouldn’t be trusted.

Now, it may be the best way, but it’s never the only way.

Let me show you how genuine people of influence navigate situations like these.

Just last week I shared the story of how I didn’t have the money to invest in Vanessa Lau’s Bossgram Academy program.

We had actually DM’ed each other a few times, and this time I had messaged her stating how much I enjoyed the training she did and how I would join immediately if I had the means to do so.

She mentioned that the program offered a payment plan, but when I shared how I couldn’t even afford that, she immediately backed off and shared how she never wants to put any of her students in a financial crisis, so she hoped I would be able to join the next time enrollment opened.

THAT’S how genuine people of influence conduct themselves.

She promoted her brand and gave a little push (because most times, people do need that), but didn’t try to guilt me into buying her offer and encouraged me instead.

I plan to do the same thing when I launch my offer in January. If I sense that fear is the main thing holding them back, I may give a loving nudge, but I would never try to pressure anyone into joining my program because (1), that’ll just lead to buyer’s remorse on their end and a possible refund or bad review and (2), they won’t be a good student in my program and therefore won’t get any results, which is the whole point of the program in the first place.

So, if you ever feel pressured or guilted by someone of influence to buy their stuff, just know that they are self-serving and manipulating their way into a come up.

When it’s all said and done, people can only give you the tools, you still have to do and finance the work yourself. People can teach you how to file a trademark, but they can’t give you one. You still have to go and file/pay for that yourself. And so on, and so forth.

You shouldn’t have to buy all of what someone sells just to prove you “want it bad enough” or to prove your support for them.

Yes, sacrifices are required for success, but so is survival. If you have to choose between buying my offer and paying your bills for the month, you’d better pay those bills!

Don’t prioritize growing my sales over your immediate survival. What good is investing in your success if you don’t live to see it?

People’s prices may be going up, but that doesn’t mean their value is, so take heed.

This episode isn’t meant to bash anyone, hence why no names or companies were mentioned. I am not one of those brands that feed off of negativity.

However, as someone who prides themselves on authenticity and true impact among other core values, I feel it’s my duty to advise you guys against predators like these.

This is such a trying time; everyone is battling so many rough things and I would hate to see any of you being taken advantage of and made to feel lesser than because of things beyond your control.

So, just remember to look beyond those Colgate smiles to really decipher the true meaning of the messages these public figures are sharing before confirming your purchase.

Because yes, we’ve got an empire to build, but we’re going to build it the right way.

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