Why you need to value yourself might not be something that you have thought about before. When we value ourselves the positive effect can trickle down into every area of our lives. I used to be the super shy girl. I would walk around looking at the ground and couldn’t stand any physical contact. Jump forward to now and I have delivered courses and workshops across the world, read the lottery numbers live on TV in front of millions and trekked across the Artic. This isn’t something that I could have imagined when I was that shy girl. So what was the secret? I valued myself. It wasn’t some dramatic moment of change. And I’ll explain how you can make it work for you too, and actually increase your income because of it.
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What is value?
Knowing what I mean by value will help you to make a start. It is easy if we think of brands or items that we use everyday. If I think about my toothbrush, I value that it cleans my teeth, and that it stops me having to visit the dentist so often. This might seem an abstract way to look at value, but it can really help you to think of what you bring to the table by thinking of yourself as a brand.
You might be someone who is a great team player, or will always stay late to help others with their work. Or else your dyslexia helps you to look at things in a different way and find a better solution faster. Make a list of the things that you can do easily, or that people come to you for. If you really don’t know where to start, ask 20 people via email to say one thing that they value you for. This is a great self esteem exercise as well. Write them down in a notebook so that you can refer to them on days when you aren’t feeling confident.
Stop working for free
When we give away what we love to do for nothing, not only are we not valuing what we can do, but we are sending a clear message to the other person not to value it also. When you are starting out or switching careers I know that sometimes you have to do work for free. We do this to build our portfolio or to build our reputation. I want you to really think about the value of what you are gaining from giving your time away. Nothing is for free. You need to understand what you can get from it as well. Is it a new network, is it working with someone you admire and can learn from, or is it to launch your new workshop?
Thinking about how much it costs to deliver or create something should be the first thing that you do when you are putting your work out into the world. Even if you do something for free for a friend or colleague, make sure you invoice them with what the amount would have been, and that they have a 100% discount. This means that if they come back to you again (or recommend you to someone else) you can refer back to the invoice that shows how much it actually costs to have your service or product. This is also a great way for you to see the value in yourself and what you offer.
We don’t have overnight success. It is as rare as a unicorn, and I certainly haven’t seen many of them dancing around the fields lately. It is great to dream big. And I actively encourage it to my clients, as it can help you to get real about what you really want for the future. This can also change as you go along, and that is ok too. The important thing is to be honest with yourself. No-one else needs to know what your giant future dreams are if you are still building them. The important thing is to think about what you really want, what your value is, and what you can charge for it in the future to reach your dreams.
Nothing is impossible. No-one came out of the womb knowing how to do everything. Everyone learnt along the way and you can too. Remember not to compare your start to someone else’s middle. We all get there at the time we were meant to (and yes I know that can be super frustrating!) dreams take time.
If you missed last week’s podcast all about how to build your own ecommerce business and a bonus of funding for your idea or project, head over here to find out more.
If you would like some support to find out what your own value is, and how you can make the most of it, I have a few mentoring slots left for the year. You can find out all about it here: Take me to mentoring!