Instead of charging for your products or services… You ever consider giving some away for FREE?
WHAT?!?!?! Oh no! Who could ever suggest such a thing?! Give away my hard work FOR FREE? That’s not a business, that’s charity! How am I going to make money? I have bills to pay! Waaa waaa waaaa!!!
…And as your ego’s inner dialogue begins to quiet down and trail off, in the back of your mind hopefully a light bulb is faintly beginning to illuminate the dark. Maybe there’s something to the power of GIVING. What can giving do for your business and for your life?
Well... First of all, keep in mind that no one has ever become poor by giving.
You ever see the movie or read the book “The Secret”? If not, I highly recommend it – very inspirational. The premise is this: the secret to life, the universe, and manifesting everything you ever wanted is the Law of Attraction. Thoughts are things, and you become what you think. You attract into your life the people, situations, and things that resonate with the thoughts that take up most of your thinking space. It’s absolutely true. But is it the end-all be-all secret to the universe? I don’t think so. Thinking positively doesn’t make your bank account bigger or help you meet your soulmate. The power of thought is only the FIRST STEP to manifesting the life of your dreams. The next step is ACTING upon those thoughts. Starting successful businesses is what is going to grow your bank account. Meeting new people and asking for numbers to go on dates will bring your soulmate into your life. The Law of Attraction is absolutely a real law in nature, but I would propose that the real “secret” is The Law of Conservation of Energy.
The Law of Conservation of Energy states that energy within a given system(an experiment, a marriage, an office environment, the open marketplace) cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be transmuted into another form. This means you cannot receive without giving, and you cannot give without receiving. For thousands of years, we have been giving and receiving in the form of barter – the first real economic system. This is the natural ebb and flow of the universe. Giving is scientifically proven to stimulate endorphins. We are hard-wired to give. It is in our nature. By taking without giving back the energy in some form, you are preventing the natural flow of the laws of nature. This is unnatural and destructive – you become a cancer of your environment, eating up everything around you and hoarding it like a black hole. Even in business today, you cannot make money without giving something – a service, a product, your time. So the best way to jumpstart the process is to GIVE. By the Law of Conservation of Energy, even if the person or organization to which you give does not give back to you, you are bound to receive the energy from someplace else. The laws of nature do not fail.
You get out what you put in. This makes me worry about what may become of our home – the EARTH. We have been taking from it for so long without giving back anything but CO2 and toxins. Because the Law of Conservation of Energy works the other way as well – if you give negative energy, this is what you receive. It’s very natural to wonder, “Why does this keep happening to me?” Examine yourself and examine your life. Are you giving to the universe the energy that you want to receive? Then what do you expect to get but what you put in? “Well… I’ll start giving once I start receiving!” If that’s the energy you put out, then the universe will reply back with the same energy: it will not start giving until it receives. Try not to attach too much importance on the words and labels I am using here. You can replace “universe” with whatever you want: God, Infinite Intelligence, Source, a person, your client, your wife/husband, your kid, your employer, etc.
Deepak Chopra says that the Seventh Spiritual Law of Success is the Law of Dharma or "life purpose." By The Law of Dharma, you must first find your true self, express your unique talent/gift, and use it to serve humanity. These three components of the Law of Dharma are the only way to permanent abundance. "When your creative expressions match the needs of your fellow humans, then wealth will spontaneously flow from the unmanifest into the manifest" (Deepak Chopra, The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success). So ask yourself, “How can I help? What value can I add?”
I grew up in Southern California – a very selfish, me-centric place. The whole point of life in this suburban culture is personal gain and wealth. That is what everybody is working for – to GET RICH! So we can sit in our big box cages, turn our brains off, watch TV, and separate ourselves from everyone else.
But what would it look like if our value system of currency was based on GIVING, instead of personal gain??? What if – instead of waking up every morning to make the most you can possibly make – you woke up every morning to GIVE the most you could possibly GIVE? What would our economy look like if your income was determined by how much you GIVE? We wouldn’t need a money system, we wouldn't need an economy, we wouldn’t need banks, we wouldn’t need credit, we wouldn’t need taxes, we wouldn’t need corporations, we wouldn’t need a 9-5 system, we probably wouldn’t even need a government. If everybody focused on giving to everybody around them, we wouldn’t need jobs. This is entrepreneurship at it’s core. Small biz is the life blood of our economy.
Ideal isn’t it? An unattainable dream? Well… I think we’re not too far off. I would argue that this is already the way it is, but very few are privy to this knowledge and taking advantage of these natural laws. I would argue that our current economic climate is the way it is because our mindset is not aligned with these natural laws – we are focused on, “How do I make the most money?” instead of, “How can I help the most people?” We cannot fix the problems we are experiencing (education, food, climate change, economy, medical system, pharmaceuticals, consumerism, corporatism, corruption, lobbying, buyouts) by treating the symptoms – creating new laws and new systems. In order to create real change, WE must change. Our ideology must change, our mindset must change, our psychology must change in order to change our actions and habits, which will ultimately change our environment and therefore our destiny. We live in a very selfish, me-centric, separatist, exclusivist, nepotistic culture. It has taken me YEARS to overcome the conditioning with which I was raised in So Cal: go to school, get good grades, go to a good college, get a degree, get a job, save and invest, get credit cards to build credit, go into debt, get married, buy a house, go into debt, buy a car, go into more debt, have a kid, go into more debt, keep saving and investing, send your kid to college, go into more debt, keep saving and investing, until you retire so you can get a severance package from your job and a social security check every month from the government. HAHAHAAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! It sounds so stupid today. I suppose it is still happening in some places. I do know a few people with jobs like this, one is trying to retire, and one is looking to get out because he HATES it. I’m not saying we should burn the banks and corporations! I think our system does make some things a lot easier and more efficient. But in order to create the change we want, we must first change ourselves.
I challenge you to try an experiment… Whatever your business is, try to give away your product or service for FREE for a single day. Just one day! Instead of trying to make money from your clients, buy their products/services. Instead of buying a meal for yourself, take your business associate out for lunch. Instead of promoting your own business, promote somebody else’s. Then analyze your results – see if there's any measurable R.O.I. in terms of income, branding, or even your personal fulfillment. Probably nothing will happen immediately. But keep on the lookout for the return of the energy you put out. Then comment below with your results. :)
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