For Neil and I, one of the premises of our work as business and life partners is wondering individually, as a couple and with our clients, how do we limit our fulfillment because of the unexamined beliefs we have about ourselves, others or the world? The answer is usually shocking.
In relationship to money, I have some beliefs that have been recently getting some air time. One: what I offer, my gift, is not valuable (read: cannot charge for services). Two: I already have enough money to support my daily needs and more would make me feel guilty. Three: The prospect of making money with other people in the world suffering would be selfish. Where did these beliefs come from?
Lately, I have been listening to Edwene Gaines. She is a little older lady who talks a lot about God and prosperity. Here is what I garnered from her message, if your gift will bring value to the world and you can make money by selling it to people in need and subsequently offer that money back to people in need, one could personally have a hand in making the world a better place (read: Oprah). This brings number two unexamined belief into question!
I have a gift. It has taken me a long time (40 years) to figure it out. Little did I know that all of my life pursuits have been apprenticing me to this gift. I know that with this gift I can make the world a better place by helping people feel safe in themselves, who they are and what they offer the world and in turn help others feel safe as well. Now what do I charge?
Now that I am running my own business it is helpful to create a structure around the cost of my services. Since my perspective on money has never been to amass a great fortune (see unexamined belief number three), though I am not averse to this, I find the idea of charging money daunting. To me this means that I have to offer you something of value, but the value of my job as a coach is my perspective, not an actual deliverable, and what if you don’t like what I have to say, well then, why don’t you pay me next time…
I have discovered, through trial and error, that paying next time or offering free services does not create the relationship that I am looking for: long-term, committed and forward thinking/moving. I am committed to my clients, I am in it for the long-term and I am perpetually thinking and moving forward. I have discovered this has value. Again, what do I charge?
Another obstacle for me is add-on services. Clients keep asking me for a meditation CD and a DVD of somatic practices, or more information on requests, and other concepts that we cover in our sessions and at our workshop. From the outside when people ask for those tools to support their practice and future they mean it. Yet, I think oh they don’t really need to spend their money on that, I even offer them other places to get these resources, when they really want it from me because they trust me.
Recently, thanks to my enduring love and respect for my friend, I begrudgingly went to a workshop in Las Vegas called Speak to Sell given by Lisa Sasevich (thanks Cyndi). Lisa and her team helped me see I was not serving my clients by holding back my offer for more options to deepen their learning. She called it a disservice (see unexamined belief number one). A disservice! Can you believe it! Here I am hoping to offer value and choice, and I am undermining my own value by not offering support services for people who love me and want to learn more!
The more implemental benefit I received from this workshop was a plan. Here’s what you offer and the cost for people who are interested in learning but not too committed yet, and here is the, I am interested and committed but not sure if you are my teacher yet, middle ground offer and cost, and here is what I offer and charge to the person who wants to buy the farm! Not being from a business systems background, the model is so simple yet it eluded me.
Since I am secure with my gift and offer to the world, I am uncovering and revising my unexamined beliefs about money, and I now have a plan and know what to charge for my services, I have a sense that from here I can build a foundation that will serve other people, provide for my family and benefit the world. Want to uncover the underlying beliefs that keep you from reaching your potential? Invite perspective, the world needs your unique gift!