I sprained my ankle last weekend at an event. I’m not usually one to get injured, and I was highly uncomfortable being wheeled around in a wheelchair (even by the handsome security guard who was enjoying all of the good looking women at the conference!).
I did my best not to let the injury get me down, and I made the most of it. However, I must have been giving off some victim energy because I had a lot of people ‘helping’ me!
I have to start by saying that much of the generosity showed by people was welcome and lovely. And some was downright intrusive and a great indicator of why some people are not doing well in their business.
In Raymond Holliwell’s book, Working With the Law, in the chapter on the Law of Receiving Holliwell says, “Jesus gave his substance always where it would do most good… he cautioned against unwise giving.”
Unwise giving is giving your substance, your gifts, your genius, or the details of your inspired mission, to someone who is not prepared to use it or do good with it.
With my ankle sprain, an abundance of people offered me a variety of healing approaches, some in person, others via email or Facebook. Some people had a background of relatedness with such that it was a welcomed gift that they suggested that they might be able to help me. With others, I didn’t know them at all, or wasn’t aware of their unique gifting. I didn’t value the offer, and the interaction left both of us feeling uninspired and even depleted.
Specifically, I had people who wanted to coach me on the deeper emotional meaning of the sprain, which I believe in of course, but I have a coach that I pay for that stuff. I also had people offer me free energy healing, and paid energy healing, and a myriad of other advice.
The solutions that resonated for me I ASKED FOR and appreciated. The other was unwise giving.
Here’s what else I noticed. Lots of people are complicit in the unwise giving by practicing unwise receiving. Because we want to be polite, because we don’t have our own boundaries, we let people give us their substance where it is unwanted. We allow people to give us unsolicited feedback, spewing opinions like they have no value, and we take them.
I see countless entrepreneurs get off track because they met someone networking who told them they didn’t think their business could make money and they believed them. I have a client who tells the story about how she gave her elevator speech at an event and a coach told her that her niche was terrible, and in one 5-minute conversation the coach gave her a new niche. She worked on the new niche for several months before going back to the one that was in her heart.
While I was in my wheelchair last weekend waiting for security to wheel me to my cab to urgent care, a woman who appeared to be a business coach asked me what I do. I gave her some half-hearted answer as my focus was elsewhere, to which she responded, “Are you open to feedback?”
I almost said yes as an automatic, polite response, then quickly said, “no, thank you.” Can you imagine? I don’t know this woman and have no idea whether or not she is successful. She doesn’t know me and has no idea what is working or not working for me, and she thinks it’s a good idea to give me feedback on what I do?
Stop the Madness
Please, don’t accept feedback, or healing, from people who you haven’t requested it from, or who you don’t know or respect. They may be just great and amazing, but you don’t know, and they just may derail you. Not to mention you are reinforcing a behavior that will keep them broke!
And please, don’t give your gifts to people who haven’t asked for them, or who don’t know and value you and what you do. That is why you charge people, because you can be certain at that point that they find your stuff juicy.
I am sure your gifts are fantastic. I’m certain a lot of the people who broke boundaries with me last week are also highly talented and gifted. And there is nothing more diminishing than offering that which is most important to you to someone who dismisses it. Please don’t put yourself in that situation.
If you’re not sure how to tell when it’s appropriate and when it’s not, take a good sales training. I include a whole module on this in my Biz School for Aligned Entrepreneurs. There are lots of other business coaches that teach authentic selling in a way that honors the Law of Receiving. We always get what we need when we need it, get the training you need now!