When I first started writing a book about the self-help industry, I was skeptical but willing to be open-minded about the idea that people could heal themselves in ways that I had personally never found useful. The last thing I wanted was to just stand back and mock them. The plan was to go to a bunch of seminars and retreats and take an honest stab at fixing everything that has ever been wrong with me.
The most helpful was a place called the Hoffman Process in Napa Valley, where I got to spend eight days beating couch cushions with a bat while pretending I was killing my parents (you had to be there). The least helpful was a place in Virginia that kicked me out halfway through.