I’ve always been a pretty direct kind of a gal – in fact, I was told by my parents when I was young that I was too honest and too outspoken. Perhaps now, with more maturity (well a little anyway), I know better how to ‘sugar the pill’ and phrase things in a way that’s acceptable to the recipient. In any case, I hasten to add that feedback is always given, without exception, with the very best of intentions. By and large, I now reserve this for my clients or potential clients who I’ve had some contact with, unless someone asks me specifically for my opinion, in which case, I give it happily.
However, there is one area where I feel I must now speak out with even greater force than I may have done before, so that the message is received loud and clear and there is no room for misunderstanding at all. The subject to which I refer is the numerous consequences of NOT charging what you’re worth.
Whether you’re under-charging, discounting your fees or doing work for free, you have set in motion a series of consequences which will have a compound effect on your funds. Depending on the extent of your not charging effectively, the impact will be greater or lesser. In some cases this may be, in itself, significant bordering on devastating. However, there’s more and it’s potentially far more disturbing than a loss of money!
What I’m alluding to is the vast array of consequences of the emotional kind – tiredness, stress, lack of fun/family time/me time, health issues, strained relationships, resentment and even overwhelm. In fact, I recently took on two clients who were at the overwhelm stage. One I’ve been working with for a short while and things are already turning around and the other I’m about to begin work with shortly.
I also created a survey to discover both the financial and the emotional impact of not charging what you’re worth. It demonstrates, from those who’ve completed it, that this level of suffering is not uncommon. (What’s worse, up until then, they were probably suffering in silence or may not have been aware of what the problem was.)
However, what is even more surprising is that once they do know clearly both the financial and emotional impact of their behaviour, they don’t always do anything about it. Why is that? Well, it’s probably the very behaviour that causes them to not charge what they’re worth in the first place; that is the dreaded FEAR. Since I’ve addressed this subject in other articles (see links below) I’m not going to revisit it, except to say, don’t let the fear stop you.
So this is what has driven me to write this short blog to implore, nay strongly urge you to realise that the next step from overwhelm is likely to be “heading for a nervous breakdown.” I believe that this is ultimately what will happen if you continue to not charge what you’re worth on a longer term basis. In fact, surely the fear of a potential nervous breakdown is far greater than the fear of tackling not charging what you’re worth.
If you recognise any of the above, then please complete this simple 2 minute survey to discover where you’re at on the spectrum of heading for a nervous breakdown!