Conscious Revolution
Conscious Revolution
The Cult of Self-help (Part 1)
The Cult of Self-help (Part 1)
This is how self-help doesn't help you

Are you ready to unravel the layers of the self-industry to reveal the cult tactics underneath?

Ever wondered about the driving force behind our collective conversations about self-help, and where these ideas originated from?

Buckle up, because in the 1st of this 2-part solo episode, I’m taking you through my journey as a recovering self-help junkie— and the insights that have helped me redefine what authentic growth means beyond commercialized interests of a capitalist industry.

We can’t talk about the self-help industry (or any other capitalist industry) without setting the context. In this episode, I expose the aspects of self-help that are a form of capitalist propaganda, which is what makes it especially culty.

How do themes of late capitalism, religious fundamentalism, and patriarchy converge within the self-help industry? What mechanisms of mind control operate through self-help narratives? How does the self-help industry perpetuate a cycle of dependence and doom? And, more importantly, what impact does this have on our individual and collective well-being?

And of course, no episode would be complete if we don’t discuss next steps in how we can embrace authentic growth and interact with self-help in a mindful, intentional, and discerning way. Yes, there IS such a thing as ethical self-help and I’m going to provide some recommendations on how to find it!


Outline & Timestamps:

  • Introduction

    • Explore self-help's impact on cognitive dissonance and gaslighting & its effects on individual and collective well-being.

  • My Self-Help Journey (04:24)

    • My personal journey through the self-help industry and what motivated me to have this candid conversation.

  • Insight into the Self-Love Trend (08:18):

    • Analyze how the self-love trend reflects broader self-help themes to uncover its implications for personal growth.

  • Distortion of Psychological Theories (16:36):

    • How Carol Dweck’s Growth Mindset theory reflects self-help’s misinterpretation of psychological science.

  • Unveiling Sociocultural Context (25:21):

    • Reveal self-help as capitalist propaganda & analyze themes of late capitalism, religious fundamentalism, and patriarchy.

  • Gaslighting by the Self-Help Industry (31:32):

    • Exploring self-help industry's manipulation mechanisms & its interplay with capitalism's cult-like undertones.

  • Toxic Individualism Explored (37:42):

    • Expose toxic individualism within self-help.

  • The Self-Help Cycle of Doom (40:30):

    • Navigate the cycle's exploitation of fear, exploitation, and dependence.

  • Unveiling Manipulative Tactics (48:45):

    • Expose less-obvious manipulative tactics in self-help to build trust.

  • Introduction to Ethical Self-Help (54:37):

    • How to discern between ‘good’ v.s. ‘bad’ self-help.

References & Show Notes:

Demystifying Self-love: Loving Yourself Beyond the Trend - My NEW E-book

Who Is Wellness For?- Fariha Róisín

The Toxic World of Self-help- YouTube Documentary

Navigating the Cult of Fitness Class, Self-help guides, and Groupthink- Shondaland Article

Self Improvement Might Sound Healthy. But There's a Downside to Wanting to Change- Time Article

Trying to Be Happy Is Making You Miserable. Here's Why- Time Article

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Conscious Revolution

Conscious Revolution

Conscious Revolution is a podcast about political awakening--where we explore the intersection of cults, cons, and capitalism. How do we define ourselves outside of exploitative social systems, mainstream cults, internet echo-chambers, and authoritarian agendas? How do we navigate the collective struggle to discern reality from illusion? Conscious Revolution is a critical exploration of this and so much more! Get in, loser: We're starting a Conscious Revolution! Hosted by Margarit Davtian, a Master’s level social scientist, activist, and spiritual seeker. This podcast takes a critical approach to personal evolution and embraces the concept of ethical, trauma-mindful self-help. We deconstruct cultural movements, dodge the traps of the spiritual ego, explore new perspectives, laugh at our mistakes, liberate our mind from dogma, and resist the culty influences that distort, manipulate, or sabotage our evolution. There’s a difference between knowing the path and walking the path. I hope you have chosen to walk the path. I’m so happy that our paths have crossed and I’m looking forward to celebrating, sharing, and learning with you! For more insights and inspiration, visit You can also find me on Instagram and Facebook @seekwithser.