Updated: Feb 10
I’m turning 70 in a few days!
I’ve been thinking about this milestone for the last few months, and decided to give myself a gift! A BIG gift!
Before I tell you what it is, try to guess. A car? A special vacation trip? A new guitar?
No . . .
I’ve actually wanted to give myself this gift for years, but just never got up the courage.
So now is the time. I’m doing it!
My gift is: I’m going to stop charging for my classes and programs! I’m going to offer them in the spirit of a gift. And I’m VERY excited about it.
How in the world can I consider this a gift to myself? ? ?
Let me explain.
I was born under the sign of Aquarius — so perhaps that’s one reason why I have held a vision of a different world. A world where everyone gives and receives freely of their gifts, talents, and resources.
The world actually used to be like this. Indigenous people all over the world have lived with a “gift economy.” This concept is described fully in Charles Eisenstein’s book: Sacred Economics.
In this world, the exchanges between people were built upon reciprocity.
We still do this in our personal lives — but not in the business world. If I give you a gift, you’re likely going to WANT to reciprocate. But it’s up to you if, when, and how much you might give to me.
This is the kind of world I want to live in.
I want to give freely of my gifts.
And if anyone wants to give to me voluntarily, I will accept the gift with gratitude.
Like Charles Eisenstein, I wanted to run my business on the basis of the gift economy.
But in the past, every time I thought about doing this, I let fear stop me.
Would I have enough money to pay my bills if I didn’t charge for my classes?
Getting older has made me braver!
Gandhi’s words also inspire me: “Be the change you wish to see in the world.”
I want MORE people to receive what I have to offer.
I want MORE people to have the opportunity to learn what I can share.
I want to help MORE people change their lives for the better.
And I don’t want anyone to be left out because of money.
So I will be offering my classes and programs as a gift.
Here is how it will work: When someone registers for a class, they will have an opportunity to choose any amount they want to contribute to me, including zero. And they will be able to change this amount at any time. After starting the class, they may discover they are getting more value than they anticipated — or they may be disappointed in what they are getting.
I will give my best to everyone, regardless of what they choose to give.
My biggest concern about this plan is that in our society, we have been taught to value things more if we have to pay more for them. “You get what you pay for.”
I don’t want anyone to get less from my programs just because they may have paid nothing — or little — for them.
So, when thinking how much to contribute for one of my programs, I recommend you consider the following:
How much do I value this information?
What do my budget and circumstances allow?
How much do I need to pay to take this program seriously?
What might I pay for something comparable to this program?
Would I like to contribute enough to help support those who can’t afford to contribute?
The most important considerations for me are:
I want to give my gifts to more people
I want everyone to have equal access to my gifts, regardless of their circumstances
I want everyone to get the MOST VALUE possible from my gifts
Every time I receive an email update from my students or clients, past or present, sharing how their lives have changed for the better, I get a gift. I celebrate with every single success!
So the more people I support in changing their lives, the more I receive in joy and satisfaction.
The calendar says I’m turning 70, but I’m full of health and vitality because of my healthy lifestyle. I want to help as many people as possible enjoy the benefits of a healthy lifestyle as much as I do.
I’m very excited about giving myself this gift, and sharing this gift with you and the world!
Charlie (my wonderful partner) will be making the changes to my website to reflect this gift as soon as he can.