Article by Charlie Wright
I was talking to a friend who went to a 1-day seminar recently….
It was a very good one by all accounts. The seminar was hosted by Matt Bird (the guy behind Ten Minute Trader).
My friend was saying that the mix of people there was intriguing.
“Intriguing?” I said.
“There were a few good looking…. young…. women there…” he drooled. “It wasn’t the usual crowd.”
I was waiting for him to say “People like YOU, Charlie.”
I must admit, I used to go to lots of seminars, conferences and the like. I’ve seen everyone from Ted Nicholas (advertising), Michael Masterson (copywriting) and Russ Whitney (property) to William Rees Mogg (investment), and Andrew Reynolds (internet marketing)…
Unless you’ve seen a middle-aged man wearing a headset prancing on stage to the strains of Simply the Best, you’ve NEVER LIVED.
However, I’ve stopped going recently.
Having two kids in the last two years has turned me into a virtual recluse. If I’m not running email newsletters or developing JVs, I’m looking after the kids, cooking or walking the dog. Or asleep.
The only time I’ve left Hackney recently is to go to Blacks, my Soho drinking den. So that hardly counts as me joining the real world, does it?
So I wonder what the conference scene is like these days….
Is it all young people with iPads? Is it all young girls with flowery dresses?
Are conference videos now in 3D?
Do you sit in a large domed room in coloured glasses and scream while Andrew Reynolds’ face launches itself from the screen in a spiral of cash?
I assume not.
But if you’re a regular on the seminar circuit, let me know if any speakers or events have sparked your enthusiasm. Drop me a line and fire away with your experiences.
Or perhaps you’ve got a horror story to share? In which case please do… while I spend my life in nappies YOU can be my eyes and ears.
“Go out and live your life for me… please, for god’s sake LIVE!”
None of this makes me sound very good, does it?
I accept that if I’m going to keep writing this newsletter I should probably start going to some of these things again. Otherwise I’m going to sound like a stuck record. And not a GOOD record like Exile on Main Street, but a BAD record like The Krankies’ Fan Dabi Dozi.
Saying that, all I can remember from the old days is that there’s no addiction like a seminar addiction.
Are you a conference junkie?
Type ‘conference junkie’ or ‘seminar junkie’ into Google, and see how many pages come up.
Some people talk about their attempts to limit themselves to ‘one seminar per month’, as if they were alcoholics. Others say they go to ‘every conference’ they’re invited to.
One self-help guru writes:
‘There are some people who are seminar junkies. They take course after course, take notes, say they finally got it, and take another course in a couple months. They get to say they are ‘working on’ spirituality, personal growth, getting their act together. They get the opportunity to change, but that is not what they really want. They want to hold on to what they already have, be it victimhood, the comfort zone, whatever.’
It’s an interesting point. Conferences can be a way of satisfying a craving for self- improvement… without having to bite the bullet and take action.
Whenever you are about to sign up for a seminar, you should ask yourself:
‘Am I going to this conference to gain something useful that I will put into practice as soon as I get home… or make contacts that I will actually follow up?
…Or am I going so that I FEEL like I’m doing something useful with my time?’
Seminars can be a very expensive way to procrastinate.
Take it from a man who knows!