We all have them. Friends and/ or family who are super excited to share with you the revolutionary new product they have the inside scoop on. And we are so lucky… I mean really really lucky… that they have decided to share this with us… get us in just before it explodes onto the market. We’ll be rich. We can retire early. We will literally have the life that everyone dreams of. For just a modest sign up fee, a modest investment into the “business builder” package and a commitment to autoship…… hold the phone…. what?? When did I get moved from the “friend” pile to the “opportunity” pile?
The latest example of this in my life is a revolutionary weight loss product that a branch of the family tree is peddling. Guaranteed to work without changing a single thing in my life.
Don’t get me wrong, I am not completely immune to this… I have struggled with my weight since college and I have drunk this type of kool-aid many many times. But getting older has a way of turning down the noise in this department. I am truly happy and I am truly tired of looking for reasons not to be happy. I know that I could lose some weight, but I have closed the door on self loathing and body image. 1) we eat very healthy 2) I don’t smoke and I barely socially drink… a couple drinks a week.. maybe 3) I exercise almost every day… not crazy gym/ bootcamp stuff… fun family stuff like walking the dog, bike riding, hiking, skiing. 4) I still turn my husband down for sex more often than he turns me down (this is an important pendulum in my opinion) and very important 5) My children are watching me and learning, even when I think they aren’t.
So I’m not interested in the magic potion… I am choosing not to open that door again and that is the #1 reason I am not interested. Here are a few more pretty important ones.
1- It is not a lifestyle change. Adding a supplement to your diet is not a lifestyle change. A lifestyle change leads to healthy long term benefits. If you do not improve the food you put into your body and increase the exercise and energy output from your body you will gain all the weight back when you stop taking this supplement. The habits that got you here in the first place will lead you there again.
2- Weight loss supplements are not healthy and natural. The active ingredients in these products manipulate your digestive system and unnaturally suppress your appetite. It is hard on your kidneys, liver, gall bladder and potentially your heart. Many of the thousands of promotional social media posts promise people that by taking these products they could control their diabetes, high blood pressure, fibromyalgia and people could stop taking their medications. My god… how dangerous it is to make these promises to people!
3- Multi Level Marketing models are not the gateway to fortune. There are literally thousands of them out there and millions of people participating. Less than 1% of those people actually gain financial independence from the commissions paid. Less than 1% actually make a respectable wage and you are giving up benefits as well as CPP or RRSP contributions. Over 97% of people barely pay for their own personal use of the products and/ or end up losing money on this. 100% of the people trade personal/ family time for marketing time and sales.
4- My relationships are important to me. I have a respectable professional reputation with a valuable network of people in my field. I have friendships built on support and trust that I consider a gift. I have a deep love for my family, again based on support and trust. I will not exploit the connections I have. I will not pretend to care how people are when my real end game is to screenshot the conversation and share it in my quest to make a dollar. My relationships are a gift. They are not an opportunity and they are not for sale.
People were meant to be loved. Things were meant to be used. The world is in chaos because things are loved and people are used. Dalai Lama