Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Charge What You're Worth and don't apologize!

“This place doesn’t run on fresh air and sunshine, honey.” Whitney English

I feel called to share this post yet again.  I have posted it many times over the years to answer questions.  Recently, I was "called" out for not answering messages sent on facebook, charging for workshops, and the name Shaman Medicine Woman.  The ones who questioned never have taken the time to read my story which I have shared frequently and openly.  Some have only ever taken workshops through scholarships and believe that they should be able to take all workshops for free.  Some feel if a post goes up on my fan page I must be available at that moment and I should stop all things and answer their message.

So first, facebook allows for scheduling of posts.  This means I can pre schedule posts for when I am not online.  I have students that often times post for me on my pages to free my time to do other work.  Just because a post goes up on a social media page these days, it has no reflection upon whether a person is online or not.  And even when someone is on line, they may be speaking with clients, doing other work, and not on social media.    I spend very little time on social media actually.

Next, as I am often asked about the name of my page and what to “call” me let me reshare again.

The name Shaman Medicine Woman is simply the name of a fan page.  When I made the decision to begin a fan page I had a difficult time in dreaming the name.  So I began doing what we will call a marketing study.  After a bit I found two separate terms that were being searched relative to what I wished to share upon.  One – medicine woman and two – shaman.  Thus, the name Shaman Medicine Woman was birthed.

The purpose of sharing is to freely share teachings to many through various posts.  Longer teachings in a blog format are many times not sought after.  We live in a society where give me spirituality – but give it to me fast.  Social media created some of this.  So in creating a page which shares tidbits, has soul-verations, and can easily be found is a vehicle for transmitting a message.

While I did do an apprentice with a Mohawk and my father was Wabanaki, I am just a woman who carried medicine from a number of paths including walking the path of my elders.  I am also an ordained Minister with IMM and walk the vows of ordination with as much integrity as possible.  I am also a coach and mentor.  I am an author.  I am a mother.  I am a wife.  Each of us wears many hats and could go by many “words” (titles).  

My legal name is Carla Goddard, Msc. D. and most call me simply Carla or Doc G.  Do I consider myself a medicine woman?  We are all medicine people are we not?  We all carry our own medicine within.  Do I offer indigenous teachings?   I suppose it would depend upon your perception of the word indigenous.  I share teachings taught to me by my elders in a contemporary way that arises from my experience in life.  The elders I was blessed to learn from are from different lineages and different traditions.   Is anyone better than or more authentic than another – no they are the truths and the medicine of those who shared them.  I share my truths and my medicine as I have experienced them.

I have been asked numerous times about fees for ceremonies.  There is NEVER any fee’s for ceremonies.  If someone tries to charge you a ceremony, run.  While donations for materials is always appreciated. 

Yes I do charge a fee for mentoring, coaching and workshops.  Sometimes that comes in the form of money, while other times it comes in the form of fresh vegetables on my table; they are a form of energy exchange.  Whatever one does in life there has to be an exchange of energy.  There are times when I receive a handmade talking stick that would take your breath away or a necklace representing the medicine wheel that the heart and soul of the artist.  Would you expect to receive a person’s heart soul work in a sacred object such as a talking stick or necklace for nothing?  Hopefully you answered no.  Then why would a soul filled, heart filled coaching session be any different?

The subject of money is often looked upon as a negative energy; yet, we all strive for a prosperous and abundant life.  If one pauses to look upon the exchange of energy as simply energy (whether it was money energy, harvest energy, or service energy) we may find that we are more prosperous and abundant than we originally thought.  

I have gone to school to earn the title Msc.D.  I paid a great deal of money to do so.  If I did not also carry medicine within (which I know all do whether they know they do or not), if I only worked in the material, linear world, or if I did not believe that all things that we do are sacred - there would be no need for this discussion.  It would be accepted as normal practice.  

Sacred economics (a phrase I heard recently) is a weaving of sacred life and sacred business, I try to follow this path.  I attempt to offer as much as possible to others at no cost or low cost.  I do not take apprentices to become Shaman.  I do offer mentorships, workshops, teachings, among other things for a fee.  In return for that fee I give as much of my soul as possible.  I do coaching and yes I charge a fee for the session.  Please find another life coach or business coach who does not charge a fee for their services.  Yet, as I find business coaching as sacred as teaching a workshop on journey work I am questioned about charging for the service.

We need to all come to a place where we know that every breath, every thought, every action is sacred.  This includes workshops on social media marketing and how to build a website.  It is all sacred and for all there needs to be some energy exchanged between the teacher and the student.  It is all about the sacred intent behind your breath, your words, your soul . . .

It is my sincere hope this answers some of the questions that has been asked, gives some food for thought, and shares some insights.