Advice books and blogs and so on are, in theory, supposed to make people happier. In reality, they often seem to create anxieties in people that they didn’t even know they had. I suspect that’s how they make their money. They’re the Febreeze of the book world, especially if you have (metaphorical) allergies. This is especially true of the parenting and lifestyle self-help industries. It is shocking the number of google questions that find our blog asking, “What happens if I don’t sleep train.” (Answer: nothing– your kid eventually learns to go to sleep on hir own because the human race would not have survived if people couldn’t figure out how to sleep. It is highly unlikely that adult problems with sleeping are caused by your parents not CIO when you were a baby.)
On the one hand, these different recommendations, which are usually in the form of hard and fast rules (You must live the MMM way or the LV way or the DR way or etc. etc. etc.) might get some folks to think, “Am I happy with what I’m doing now, if not then maybe I can change something. Here are some things I can try.”
But, on the other hand, some folks think, “I thought I was happy but I’m not following that rule and someone else says I should be so now I feel guilty and maybe I’ll follow that rule and just not understand why it makes me less happy than I was before… until someone else tells me to follow the opposite rule and it may not work out either.” Because a lot of people are followers who like to be told what to do or don’t have whatever contrary streak one needs to resist constant assaults to their self-confidence and common sense. And that kind of sucks.