Getting out of my own way to model a business


This phase of the Suitcase Entrepreneur’s blog challenge has been a fascinating experience. It’s not really a surprise that it’s been the most confronting as it’s dealing with the area that I’ve known to be the weakest for a while... generating revenue. What’s fascinating is that I’m seeing how many mental and emotional blocks I have regarding generating revenue through my efforts.

It’s something I touched on in a previous post when I said that I’d stopped painting after people started asking me how much I’d charge for one of my pieces. It was such a confronting question to me for some reason that the only thing I could think to do was to stop painting... even though it had been something I loved to do.

The thing that I saw was that, because it was something I loved doing, it felt easy and therefore taking money for it was ... wrong in my mind. It felt like I was taking advantage of people if I charged for something that was so easy for me and the last thing I wanted to do was take advantage of anyone. That they didn’t see it that way didn’t really factor in for me at the time. 

I see that the same thing is still at work in my mind for Life Athletics. It doesn’t matter that a number of people have already thanked me for the great contributions the site has made to their lives, it’s easy and fun for me, therefor it’s not something I can charge for. I see the twist in the thinking and now it’s a matter of transforming it. 

When looking at what business model I want to establish for Life Athletics, a combination of Active and Residual makes the most sense. I’ve touched on these already in the last two posts so I’ll keep going with the personal stuff that’s floated to the surface in looking at this. 

One of the things I could do to generate income quickly would be to offer coaching or running workshops. People have shown interest and it would be fun. The issues of charging for something I find fun came up as soon as the idea was tabled. It was actually difficult for me to imagine setting up a workshop and charging for it. If someone else charged for it, I could do it easily, I love working with people and leading groups. I’m not sure if it’s a fear that no one would show up, or that they wouldn’t get value... I know that once I got started, people would come. I know too, that it would be nearly impossible to spend time looking at ways of setting people’s lives up to match their dreams for themselves and not have it be of supreme value so and yet there’s something that’s catching the thought before it moves forward. 

It’s exciting really... it’s like finding a weakness or tightness in the body, it’s an opportunity to train and grow and by working on a weakness, our strengths get stronger. I see Life Athletics as a diagnostic tool for life, as you push your levels up, you’ll find where your weaknesses are faster than through any other method. At that point, it’s OBVIOUS where the work needs to be.  

There are many ways to work out this knot of an emotional block that’s in the way of charging for things connected to my passion projects. What I know is that often these things are often strategies that were built to serve us in the past... things we developed to keep some part of us safe. I’ve now grown to the point where it no longer serves me and it’s not required and so I’m going to thank it and let it go. 

An amazing thing happened while I was typing this... I received a text from a friend asking me if I’d  design a logo for them. I’ve been doing lots of graphic design projects lately as it’s been a way of seeing people in the world loving products that I’ve made and to do it in an easy way. Well, she asked how much I’d charge and I said, that because she wasn’t making any money from her project yet, I’d do it for free. In my mind it was a chance to support someone building their brand and that she could contribute to Life Athletics in the future. She was thrilled at the thought of contributing to Life Athletics but something bothered her... she WANTED to pay. 

She doesn’t have a lot of money and was very shy about the amount she offered. It was not a lot of money but it represented something large for her as it was her investing in her future and in herself. I saw that not letting her pay would be to deny her that experience and that letting her pay actually made her happier and more comfortable. It’s not the first time I’ve been paid for my graphic design work but it’s the first time I saw it like this. 

The walls are dropping already :)