When I started my business, over 20 years ago, I found that pricing my service wasn’t challenging but asking others to pay for it was. I was in a field where my clients were hurting and in need of what I provided but didn’t have the funds to access my services without the help of insurance. Fortunately, I was able to get on most of their insurance panels, but for those, without insurance, my services were out of reach financially.
I was able to work through these feelings, but I recognize that these feelings about charging for my service can at times reassert themselves. The feelings were like fat cells, they reduce but never really go away and all it takes is a moment of weakness for them to expand again and become visible.
These are the four reasons which stand out to me for why people struggle with asking others to pay for their service.
You fear the feelings of rejection. Getting a "No" for your service is received as them saying “No” to you as a person as well as a service provider. Work on separating the offer of service from the offer of self or the professional from the personal.
You lack confidence or have imposter syndrome. You need to process where these thoughts are coming from. Is it from messages you received through experiences in your past? Is it because you are comparing yourself to others? Work with someone if this is a blind spot for you.
You fear you are not charging the right amount. Not knowing the going rate for what you are offering, so you worry that you are asking too much or too little. If you don’t know the going rate for what you are offering, or something close to what you are providing if what you are offering is unique, do the research.
You feel like you are called to serve and that charging goes against your heart’s desire to serve. Having a missionary heart is great and seeing your skill as something that is a gift from God to help others is great. The Bible says that a workman is worthy of his hire (1 Timothy 5:18), which means that appropriate compensation for your effort is expected. Even a missionary has to eat and have some income to live.
Have you ever struggled in this area, if so which of these reasons resonates with you the most?
Allison is a Professional Life Strategist, helping busy professional women maintain healthy relationships professionally and personally as they move forward in their lives. She gives you tools to build the life you want.