How to Overcome Your Fear of Asking for What You’re Worth

“What!? I can’t charge my clients that!”

woman-moneyDid you work as an employee for someone else before you started up your own business? If so, you probably earned a steady income, possibly a yearly or even an hourly rate.

Now you’re in business for yourself, and you’ve discovered that what people typically charge for the services you offer is surprisingly high. Scary high. Uncomfortably high. In fact, you’re having a very hard time asking for that kind of money.

You’re not alone. There are many new entrepreneurs who feel that way, either secretly or not-so-secretly. It might be an issue of self-worth, in which case it will benefit your business (and your personal life) to work on that.

Sometimes it’s a matter of a handful of limiting beliefs. It’s almost always a case of not seeing the “big” picture.

It doesn’t serve you or your profession to lower the price to a place that’s comfortable for you, if it’s much lower than the “going rate.” There’s always a reason for that rate, even if you can’t see it. Undercutting it de-values your profession and what you do.

Worse, it de-values you. Like it or not, people judge your competence based on what you charge. If you’re the best bargain in town, they assume you’re not very good at what you do. Your ideal clients will look elsewhere, because they are more concerned with “fit” than with price.

You’ll get the “price shoppers,” the people that feel getting the lowest price is most important. If you offer coaching or healing as a service, price shoppers are never your ideal client.

They watch every penny, take advantage at every opportunity, overstep boundaries, complain endlessly, and are never completely satisfied. If you are undercharging and you have too many clients who fit this description, I guarantee you the problem is your fees.

It’s one of life’s little irony’s that the clients who pay the most are usually the easiest to work with. They are also the clients who are most likely to rave about you to others and send referrals your way.

So, now you know how important it is to charge what you’re worth. What’s in your way?

Here are 7 common blocks that stop people from charging what they’re worth, and how to overcome them:

1. “I don’t have enough experience.” If you’ve had training in the service you provide, you are still helping people produce the desired result. You don’t have to charge premium prices, but your services are certainly worth the going rate for those results.

2. “She can’t afford it.” If you are deciding whether or not someone else can afford your fees, you’re overstepping your boundaries. Only your client knows what they truly can afford, and if you enable her by lowering your fee then you are robbing her of the opportunity to discover her own power. Allow her to step up the plate and gain the satisfaction of manifesting the money to invest in herself.

3. “Healing shouldn’t cost that much,” or “you shouldn’t charge people to help them.” This is a very common belief passed down through time. If this one rings a bell, consider this: if you can’t make a living, you’ll have to go do something else. Then no one will get your help. Being paid appropriately helps you to continue to help others.

4. “I don’t want to be greedy.”  What are you doing with the money? Are you buying a private jet? If so, ok, I’ll concede you might be a bit greedy. But if you’re simply using it to live the comfortable life you deserve, then you’re probably not the greedy soul you envision.

5. “It’s not about the money.” Really?? See #3 (Being paid appropriately helps you to continue to help others.)

6. “It’s just not worth that much.” You’re not seeing the big picture: When you work for someone else, the money is steady and guaranteed. When you own your own business, the money isn’t steady and you’re taking a huge risk. 

The money is NOT guaranteed. That’s one reason business owners earn so much more – because they are willing to take the risk. Most people aren’t. They’d rather make less but have a steady paycheck.

7. “People won’t pay me that amount.” Have you asked for it? If not, this is an assumption. Try asking for it. 

If this is personal experience, and others are getting the appropriate fee, then one of two things is going on: either you need more training in providing your service, or you need training in how to communicate the value of your service to others. 

In other words, don’t lower your fee, increase your skills.

Finally, here’s a bonus tip that will always help: right before you speak to a potential client, stand in front of the mirror and practice saying your fee with confidence. You can do it! Remember, you are worth it!

One Response to How to Overcome Your Fear of Asking for What You’re Worth

  • One concept I love about charging fees is that a good fee gets them to value coaching and make an effort.

    An exercise to do is to figure out exactly how much you want to earn as a coach and the time to deliver coaching to earn that as well as time for marketing (basically double your coaching time as an estimate).

    Some phraseology on how to state your fees could help here so that the mirror exercise is comfortable.

    When I first started web designing as a freelancer, I charged too little. What a mess. ;D

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