There are a zillion books, blog posts, articles, and podcasts on the topic of how to be successful.
And most of them claim their advice is backed by data. Here’s an example from Entrepreneur magazine. The article says…
“That’s why the most successful people in the world spend their free time learning.
It’s not exactly breaking news. During his five-year study of more than 200 self-made millionaires, Thomas Corley found that they don’t watch TV. Instead, an impressive 86 percent claimed they read -- but not just for fun. What’s more, 63 percent indicated they listened to audiobooks during their morning commute.”
Great news! If you want to be a millionaire all you need is a library card and an audiobook subscription.
Or maybe not.
We can't know if the advice from this study is valuable until we know the answer to this question.
Did the researchers also study non self-made millionaires?
Because if there are a whole bunch of non-millionaires out there also reading books and listening to audiobooks - then we have a CAUSATION problem. Meaning the reading and listening didn't CAUSE the millionaires success. It's just something that lots of people, rich and less rich, tend to do. Which means we should ignore the study.
I'm hitting this topic again (see links to past articles on this topic at the bottom of this post) because we're being bombarded by this kind of garbage.
Every success system has amazing brain science behind it.
Every supplier has a study that proves they’re the best.
Every diet has amazing research backing it up.
And to make things even more confusing, most of the claims are directly contradicted by competitors equally amazing research claims. And the people who publish this garbage are laughing all the way to the bank. They could care less whether the research is valid. All they care about is getting your eyeballs on their site so they can bombard you with advertising.
So consumer beware. Any time someone claims to have rock solid proof that “winners do this”, make sure to ask them whether they took the time to check whether “non-winners” also did the same stuff. If they can’t answer that question, then it's time to hit the mute button on their audiobook.
Past Posts That Covered This Topic...
#19 Half Truths: Be On The Lookout For Sketchy Research