THE BLOG

To Barter or not to Barter? There Is No Question

05/27/2015 03:19 pm ET | Updated May 26, 2016

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You may hate me for this and think I am not progressive enough, but what I see is that although the altruistic notion of trading our craft for another's brilliant craft seems euphorically utopian, we are not ready for this.

Bartering would work IF:

1. We were all evolved enough to heal our own crap every single moment that it gets brought up.

2. We knew our worth and were not looking for someone else to define it.

3. Whole foods accepted my coaching as a form of payment for lusciously priced produce.

4. It felt so good, you could not stand yourself not going for it!

5. You get the picture

Barters work, until they don't. They feel good, until they don't.

And most people do not have the skill sets necessary to be able to confront the previously agreed upon trade and say, "this does not work for me," or "something feels off about our exchange now"

It's not our fault.

Please know. It is so not our fault, not yours and certainly not theirs.

We have all tried this, with good intention, and sometimes received blessings that are priceless, and no amount of money could come close to comparing. And we have all experienced the painful moment of trying to explain to another why we are worth more than they are, or having to hear it from the other side. As much as we don't want to hear it in our hippie-dippy-we-are-all-one world (me included!), it does not work, YET.

Yes, I said YET.

See, I still have hope. I have hope that one day we will leave behind having to prove our worth, or having to quantify our value, service, or love. It is my vision that one day we will all be able to accept one another and be open to the gifts that we each bring without putting a price on it. In the meantime, I've got college tuitions to prepare for, a retirement (although I don't necessarily believe in the concept of retirement) to fund, and a lovely desire to visit places I have only read about.

So, for now, I would gently urge that if you are struggling to meet some of your needs, that you refrain from gifting or being gifted. In the process of establishing your business, gifting can be counterproductive.

It can not only set you and your business with a reputation of giving away the goods, but also diminish your own sense of self-worth and value for your products and services. Bartering can be a great way to propel the set-up of a business, but beyond that, it is limiting to true financial wealth.

It is not a sustainable model, if you are looking to thrive rather than just survive.

And while we are on this topic, let's talk about our needs.

Yeah, needs... you know where I am going... at least I hope so. Maybe in this moment you are asking yourself the question of the century, "What do I really, I mean actually really need?" We all confuse needs with wants, and it's time we revisit our concept. Not anyone else's concept, but our own.

What do we need?

What would allow us to feel safe, have shelter, proper food, proper health, love... you, know... the basics.

I find it hilarious that when I was making $20K per year, I had all my basic needs met, PLUS somehow I found myself traveling to distant lands. Yes, yes, I know family, kids, mortgages, etc. all complicate the story. But maybe that's what this is all about... how complicated are our lives?

Some people who practice bartering are clear on the simplicity of life, and do not see the importance of making extra income, or they adapt to limited resources to align to a simple life. I, 100% advocate for simplicity, and I also know that most people and businesses appreciate having reserve for personal desires, and also to re-invest in the business for greater growth. So, live simply, and allow your business to grow.

Then, there's the question of the client's responsibility and respect for your products and services.

When a client receives services for free or as an exchange, most of the time, they are not as vested in the outcome.

The way they value the ambiguous transaction is of lesser value than whey they have to exert effort to pay for something. I have seen this time and time again, the person who receives products and services for free or as an exchange, do not put the work into the process, and ultimately fail. This is not EVERY time, but a good portion of the time this is the case.

So, the smack down on bartering is a balance: a dance if you will... between:

1. Barter when we are all evolved enough to handle it (even if you think you or they are, approach the deal with caution) and

2. Forget society and ask yourself the question...what do I really need, and what do I really want?

3. Remembering that the person on the other end deserves great outcome & that they are psychologically programmed to give greater value for a paid product or service.

And most importantly the calling of the soul.

Your soul will call, Trust me.

And it will tell you, "Sister, you have got to serve this woman, so give yourself without expecting a THING." When your soul calls like that, you have to answer. My recommendation, would be that you not make this a habit, but more of an isolated love fest, and usually when your business is more established as evidenced by your ability to meet your own basic needs first.

Love,
ASHA

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