why we have to know we're awesome to sell online - the value of being ourselves part I

The challenge with integrating our spiritual life and our business is that in order to be fully ourselves we have to stop catering ourselves to an audience, and of course, our customers are kind of an audience.

They don't eat popcorn and we don't tell them to silence their cell phones

(well, maybe they do eat popcorn - I hope not with any of that fake butter though)

but we are in business to trade value with them - the stuff we make for that stuff in their wallet; the stuff that got into their wallet when they traded their value for the stuff in somebody's else's wallet. We are all in this together after all.

Since Business 101 taught us to figure out our customer, get inside her head - who is she? what does she look like? what does she want?, then cater to that - this is all good solid advice, until it isn't anymore and the truth is - this way of thinking has always made artists a little itchy.

Maybe we quit our day job to fire our boss and now we have dozens of bosses (we call them customers or clients these days) and instead of working for a paycheck we are working for the possibility of a paycheck. We really need to know what the hell we are doing here.

I have had a couple businesses before this one and before that I was in banking. I have made many mistakes over the years, but the one thing I have done right (and this is totally because of the Course in Miracles and my spiritual practice) is this:

I have always seen myself as the primary value in my business or my job. Not the stuff I make, not the stuff I do - because I know these forms can and will change - I know the value is really me.

I know from past experience that when one business winds down I can make another one because I have done it before. Seeing ourselves as the primary value we have to offer the world rather than our makings being the primary value is an important distinction. This works the same way when we have a job.

I have many friends who sell online who are selling less and less because the marketplace is more and more crowded (and other reasons, but this is one of them). They are a little panicky. Many people have turned to teaching and coaching and this in itself is OK and a good thing really - we all teach what we need to learn after all, that's how life works - but the coaching business online is starting to look like a giant pyramid scheme (which is not in any way sustainable) with coaches just coaching people to be coaches! 

(I have to do a post on the proliferation of online coaching and the asteroid/minor planet Chiron - the wounded healer- soon)

So what is the answer here?

We always have to know our ability to make money is in our own hands.

It isn't in our customers' hands or our boss's hands - the money looks like it comes through our customer or through our paycheck. It comes from the Universe (God/Higher Self - we should pick our most comfortable word here because we really need to get this and hold it in a place we vibrate with) - the money comes from Source.

It is like air. We breathe it in. We breathe it out.

The more we try to hold on to money the more it runs through our fingers - and in fact if money is running through your fingers right now, loosen your grip! Spend a little more. Trust that life has got your back!

Some experts advise us to play out worst case scenarios with our fears - they tell us to think of the worst possible thing that could happen if we lose our job or our business and this is supposed to make us see how preposterous our fears are so we can release them -

the problem is that all of us have past life experiences where the worst possible things that could happen to us really did happen to us (and if you don't resonate with past lives, think of your familial ancestry here) and part of us knows this.

How freeing would it be to really absorb into the very DNA of our business that we just have to be who we truly are and trust that the universe will deliver to us exactly the people who will benefit from us and our work and that is exactly what will happen.

(this does not mean we will make a lot of money - it does however guarantee to make us rich)

Part II next week - going downstream with an upstream business

Have a nice weekend everyone - I had a stressful week and it is now 70 degrees and sunny so I plan to be meditating (ie gardening) in the sun as much as possible for the next two days. I had a terrible Vitamin D reading of 16 (!) recently and have decided sun (and supplements) are my friend right now. I will try to do another auto-immune thyroid/hormone post next week. Would love to hear what anyone else is doing.

Also Venus is moving into Aries May 2nd - so this is a great time for us to take any action that brings beauty and love into our world. Will write about that next time!


Viktoria said...

uplifting words, cat!
I´m gardening too for my Vitamin D level (plus supplement, looks like we all are staying inside too much......)

lynn bowes said...

Goodness. Cat, I know you are a busy girl but I have to share that just this week I posted this on my blog - http://lynnbowes.blogspot.com/2014/04/loosen-grip-and-lose-fear.html . We are vibrating in unison.

Two things at work here in Davey, Nebraska. One is that I am loosening my metalworking hands and working with watercolor. Trying to loosen that too tight grip and hard edge that metal has and this is something I desperately need to do. I felt it at the core when everything made me stiffen. Watercolor is widening my field of vision.

The second is that I am allowing my gallery owners to dictate what metalwork I need to be working on and that, well, stifles? Like forced creativity. I can't continue to be a production machine. Am I an artist or am I a seller and how do we make those two things come together? That's been heavy on my mind these past few months.

Good post. Lots to chew but I thought it was interesting that we are on the same wavelength right now. Past lives . . .


Catherine Ivins said...

Viktoria- Thank you - I am glad to hear you are taking care of this, too- I have been reading that Vitamin D is more like a hormone than a vitamin and crucial. I think we are inside too much and no doubt being depleted by stress and technology. I hope you get into your garden his weekend!

Lynn- Yes, we are totally together- love your post and your watercolor is gorgeous!

The tightness is like the indication we have pulled away from our purpose, that we are tugging a little too tightly on that line that tethers us body to soul - this totally matters and I am totally there, too - the artist/seller is kind of a new archetype right - artists always died mad and broke - so we are in unchartered territory (again!). If we can really absorb what we really bring the other person - if you could watch the energy of a person putting on a piece of your jewelry and how her aura changes when she brings it into her energy you would see what you are really 'selling' I bet! xo (I think I missed your Goddesses- need to do that!)

KJ said...

I don't expect everyone to like what I make, thus, I do not expect everyone to be a customer. After all riding the subway everyday I see lots and lots of stuff that I think OH MY GOSH someone paid for that? We all find our own beauty and that is a wonderful thing.

One of the most recent life lessons I have learned as an employee is that everyone approaches the job differently- some are all about the numbers, some are all about the quality, some are about just getting through the day. I think there is value in finding a persons strengths, not letting them get too far outside of balance- after all what good are 50 widgets if they do not fit, or a single widget which will last a 1000 years when you need 10 to keep up with the demand for the day?

I come back again and again to one of my earliest mantras- balance.

Joy to you Cat.

DancingMooney ♥ said...

Bringing beauty and love into my world, is always on my radar! Hope you had a wonderful gardening weekend, gardening is my meditation too... even if it's pulling weeds, just digging in the soil, getting my hands dirty and freeing my mind, is peaceful for me.

I am still trying to get caught up from being out of town last week, and we have another short trip planned for this coming weekend, so I'm sure that May is going to fly by faster than I know... as has, the rest of this year so far.

I love this post, and love so much about how this creative lifestyle, we may not make a lot of money, but we will be rich. It's so right, and so true... to ourselves.