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Who can you trust?

I taught a virtual class yesterday about car buying and consumer awareness and yes I did an awesome job and the participants learned a lot, but I digress. I realized after teaching those classes that you must be on your guard at all times no matter what the situation is in order not to be taken advantage of. We all know the common auto dealers tactics such as the "bait and switch," the good guy vs bad guy, the waiting game, hidden fees, or just providing little or bad information. All tactics geared to get you to purchase their car at their price and on their terms.

In the grand scheme of our supply and demand economy, we would like to think that the suppliers had our best interest as consumers. And some of them do while others fail to protect us from the world of criminals and scammers. The most common types of consumer scams or frauds are identity theft, credit card fraud, fake charities, debt collection, IRS, and worst of all romance scammers. Romance scammers create fake profiles on dating sites and apps which the popular show "Catfish" arose from. Everywhere you turn, it seems someone is there to pull the wool over your eyes for their amusement or gain.

So what do you think about a liar or a deceitful person? The definition of this word is to be guilty of misleading others. To deceive, one is looking to lead astray or frustrate others by using false ideas or underhandedness to cause ignorance or helplessness. I'm not going to generalize or assume that all sales people, recruiters, parents, men, women, children, or bosses are this way but I will let you know they are all capable of manipulation. I believe we have all been "duked" or conned at one point of our lives and if you are like me, then it wasn't the happiest of feelings.

Just as I warned the class yesterday about guarding their financial well being, we must all be on the lookout for our physical, mental, and spiritual well being as well. Consider some of the friendships, family relationships, business partners, intimate partners or religious activities you are involved in. Does that other person, group, or community have your best interest at heart or are they there to mislead you for their gain? They say if it is on the internet it must be true and as the great Maury would say "the lie detector "fact checker" determined that's a lie." So how good are you at being a lie detector or a fact checker when it comes to the ones that you associate with?

Sometimes your desperation will lead you into a circumstance. I've used this before but I believe that it is worth repeating in this situation. All words that are spoken are positioned against experience and thought and whomever has spoken them has already thought about what there is to gain out of saying them. So listen very carefully to what people say and see if their actions match.

Look at the people that you associate with and see what you have done for them vs what they have done for you and see if it is an even trade. At times it might not be due to circumstances but if the roles were reversed, would they still be there? We all need guidance, encouragement, and correction and by cutting off the "What's In It For Me (WIFM) or scammers we have in our lives, will allow us the room and opportunity to grow as individuals. #SPEAK2MYHEART

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