Values: principles or standards of behavior; one’s judgment of what is important in life.
I was one of the lucky ones. I came to the planet provided for. I never had to go without food, clothes, water or nurturing. That is not to say that my life hasn’t been full to the brim of emotional and psychic challenges however I always felt provided for.
I was conceived by parents who were born in the 1930’s. Due to what they had been through, money, food and a roof over our head was the priority. Financial stability was the main goal.
When I left home I followed a similar pattern of thinking that money was my priority, however there was another side of me searching for meaning here on earth and over the years although of course I needed money to survive, it has always been an inner value of mine that all people should have access to therapy and the best treatment/ support no matter what their financial situation. I have worked and learnt via the homeless, the acutely sensitive (mentally ill) the drug addicted and the abused.
When I first started my own practice I was confused at what to charge people. I was told that I should charge my worth. To be honest I wasn’t quite sure how much I was worth therapeutically at that stage. So I struggled with setting a price and never felt terribly comfortable charging a lot.
Now days I know my worth. I fill a gap that many others do not fill. I am always growing and learning and adding to my practice but the general medicine flow is strong and stable now and has a medicine life of its own. The journeys are still very fulfilling and profound for many and I enjoy the medicine path I take to guide and assist others in finding their own recipe of wellness. I still need to pay the bills however do not like to ‘overcharge’. It would go against my nature.
This is not about me undermining myself in any way. This is about my personal ethics and values. I have been of service to many clients who have paid ridiculous amounts to therapists who have made crucial mistakes and the client has suffered from this irresponsibility.
I have always come from the perspective of what I would want as a client myself. My sessions are two hours in length. The reason for this is that many people who seek me out, need to feel safe, have time to explore and unravel their feelings and time to integrate the journeywork.
(I have vision of the old Freudian couch where the Psychiatrist interrupts the client in mid wound and looks at his clock saying ‘times up’ and charges like a wounded bull!)
What I am talking about is ‘quality time’ spent looking into ones own spirit walk.
I charge $80 Australian for two hours. And this is often what people charge for one hour. For those dedicated to the path and sessions with me who are limited financially (e.g.: single mothers on benefits) after the first session I charge $60 with a donation of organic produce, sage or herbs to grow etc.
I do this because it feels right. I do this because it is inline with my ethics and values. If people want to give more that’s wonderful as this assists others who are struggling financially.
I can still be of support to others by doing a free or donation email service guidance and occasionally sending the workbook or the Bridge EBook to those in desperate need. For instance an acutely sensitive man in a psyche ward in New York City had no money due to being homeless but had access to his email account periodically. So I sent him my first book. He was so very grateful and I was so happy to be able to offer support in some way.
I have a donation button on my website contact page. For those feeling more generous and for those that are able every little bit helps. I believe in passing it forward.
I have supported people in person who have had no money at all and promised that they would give, but I never wait to see if they do. Some do some don’t.
But I do not go beyond my own capacity to be of service as I value my own time also. I experienced burn out many years ago and learnt well from it. My ethical boundaries are strong as I stand with an open heart of service. I value each person on the planet no matter how they are financially placed and I personally feel that if you are on the spiritual medicine path and your intention is to be of service then it is important to get your priorities in order and place your spiritual ethics and values before your financial gain. Are you walking your talk?
May your own personal values and ethics lead you to a place of caring and being of service on this abundant medicine path.
As one gives so to do they receive.
Pay it forward.
It’s worth it. Believe me!