• Christina D. Ford

Worthy of Reward

Years ago, while working retail, I hired a girl who also loved to plan birthday parties.

She would excitedly fill my ears with all of her event planning while we folded clothes, and I found myself drawn in as my daughter’s birthday was not too far in the future. “How much do you charge?” I asked.

“Oh, I don’t charge. I just do it for my friends and family.”

I couldn’t believe it. She had just finished telling me about all of the time she had spent hand-painting a sign to place near the front door, but she was doing all of it for free. She shrugged. “Most people won’t pay for something they can do themselves,” she explained.

I ended the discussion shortly thereafter, mainly due to my discomfort in knowing that if I asked, she would insist on helping with my daughter’s big day. I knew I would feel horrible not paying her for all the effort. I ended up doing it myself, but for a completely different reason than her generalized assumption.

To be fair, there is a lot of evidence to prove her assumption right.

We live in a world of do-it-yourself achievements. Our “I just can’t afford a new dishwasher right now” thoughts quickly turn into social media posts about how we’ve mastered the DIY game and figured out a way to conquer these things for ourselves. Thanks to tutorials on YouTube and the blazing help available on the internet, I would say all of us have attempted some sort of DIY with a handful of mixed results, Pinterest Baking fails being one of my favorites to peruse in my downtime.

So how do you know when it’s time to throw in the towel and hire a professional?

Personally, I know it’s time when I feel out of my element. In particular, anything to do with plumbing almost always has me placing a call to bring in the big guns – because I’ll be the first to tell you that a plumber’s skills do not reside in my wheelhouse.

We hire plumbers, electricians, landscapers, tutors, HVAC repairmen, gutter cleaners, and even housekeepers for the upkeep of our home, mechanics and tire repairmen for our cars, body-waxing specialists, beauticians, and massage therapists for our outward physical appearance. We see these people as gifted within their area of expertise, and we hire them and pay them and go about our business.

The only difference between these professionals and my former co-worker is that the professionals seemed to be aware that their services were worth something in exchange.

I would bet that you even know someone just like my former co-worker. Someone who lights up when they talk about what they love to do, but refuses to accept that their efforts are worthy of reward. Perhaps you have even avoided paying that person for their services in the past for the reasons of friendship or familial bonds, all the while believing that they “should” charge. But not you. Never you.

Which brings me to my next point. You need these types of people in your life! We all do! We need to be absolutely surrounded by people living their genius, people who are the best at what they do because it is their gift. These are the people who serve us our daily dose of inspiration to let our own gifts shine through, and beautifully.

As a Life Coach, I’m one of those people. For a while, before I even understood what it meant that everyone approached me for advice, I was unaware that I was worthy of rewards for that service. I was called a great friend, a wonderful mentor, but the argument came in, again and again, that advice on personal development could be received from many sources and for far less than my fees.

We do tend to think that we can figure it all out on our own. There’s a book someone recommended, or a website we can check out to validate the way we feel. If that fails, there’s always the personal inner circle to consult. We can always call a friend for emotional venting or advice. Our mothers, fathers, brothers, and sisters all have excellent opinions. Our co-workers can help us view things in a different light, surely. And don’t forget that big tagline – FREE.

Yet, no matter how well meaning, no matter how loving, no matter how great the advice – this is the equivalent of looking for your reflection in a fun house mirror.

Let me explain. Your friends, family, acquaintances and co-workers have already cast you a role within their life. You’re a side character within their own personal story, and they have a particular lens that they use to view both you and your actions, and how they relate to them personally. In other words, they can only reflect back to you through their own distortion and understanding of who you are.

Let’s face it: People love to tell other people what they should or shouldn’t do! Even if you don’t agree with the advice you’ve been given under these circumstances, there are certain relationships where the dynamic is such that you cling to that person’s view of you in an effort not to destroy the relationship – which is not helpful when you are attempting to restructure the biggest most important house of all – your mindset.

It comes down to worthiness.

Do you value yourself enough to invest in your own development?

Do you believe your skills are worthy of investment?

Do you believe, in the deepest part of your heart, that you are worthy of reward?

I do.

I believe that you are worthy of every investment you make toward yourself. I believe that you have a God-given gift to share with the world, and I absolutely believe that if you are out there, shining your light for all to see, that you are worthy of reward.

Just like me.

And so it is.



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