What's the difference between people who succeed in getting what they want and people who don't? It's how they view the self-help programs. In fact, the answer is in the name "self-help". Self-help programs are usually home-study courses, books, or seminars of some sort where the person must use the information or the trainer to make positive, permanent change in their lives. The thing to point out here is that it is "self-help". The person must help themselves.
A lot of people stumble from one self-help program to another without getting any real results. Why is this? Are the programs ineffective? No. People endlessly go onto the next 'magic pill' because they are counting on the external product to do all the work and 'cure' them. This isn't going to happen.
The only difference between someone who gets results in a program and people who don't is how they view their personal responsibility. Stop for a moment and ask yourself, "When you order a book, a tape, go to a seminar, and so on, what are your expectations?" The best mindset I've found to get tangible results is to treat whatever information you're learning as a set of tools you've been given. It's now up to you to use them.
Imagine there are two different people: Harold and Jarrod. Harold blames all the self-help programs for being a bunch of garbage for not solving his problems and views the self-help leaders as 'con artists' who took his money without providing him real value. Therefore, he ambles aimlessly to the next product that he believes will be his 'magic pill' that will do all the work for him. He views himself as a victim and is locked into that outlook.
Contrast Harold to Jarrod. Jarrod understands that all the information he gets as a set of tools for him to apply and use to change his own life: to help himself. Jarrod gets it. Jarrod can create massive, beneficial changes with 1/10 of the programs Harold buys because he applies everything he learns.
My point to you is that if I am studying a book or course and not getting results and my buddy is studying the same book or course and getting results, there is proof right now that the system works. I'm not a victim. We both have the same course. So what's the difference? The only difference is between him and me. I've got to step up and take responsibility. A good idea for me would be to go model him by asking him specific questions about what he is doing. In other words, I'll sort out what he is doing differently from me and I'll start doing things differently.
The bottom line here is that self-help programs can be as great as you make them. Apply EVERYTHING you learn, at least once to test it out. If it doesn't work, do something else. If it does work, awesome! Personal responsibility is always present in SELF-help programs. Be Jarrod, not Harold.