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Don't sell yourself short by Don Jessop
October 24, 2023
Don't sell yourself short.
What is your time worth? What value do you bring? How much time have you invested in your craft?
What do you know about psychology and how other people perceive you?
There are two important reasons not to sell yourself short or undervalue what you offer.
Reason number one... you devalue yourself. As a habit, that's no good.
Reason number two... the ones you are trying to serve, also devalue you.
Putting a high value on what you have to offer is important. I have two rules I follow as a horse professional. Rule number one... until I feel I'm competent in what I do, it's all free. Rule number two... once I feel I'm competent, I value my service highly. In other words, I'll do the hard work on my own time and dime to become proficient and professional. But once I am those things, I'm going to charge well for my services.
People often get it backward or upside down. They often try to charge for their services when they aren't yet competent, practiced, or professional. And then, over time, they become more competent but fail to raise their value, believing it's best to be cheap so lots of people want to buy your time.
But cheap value is a clue to the quality of service. Of course, there is the extreme overpriced too. And for that there must be some education about balance. But most people, especially competent people, need to raise their value, not decrease it.
Have you ever paid for a service that was top quality and at the end realize the cost was super low? I have, and every time it happens, I devalue the service, or worse, I instinctively take advantage of that person's generosity. It's not conscious. It's unconscious. It happens because when someone doesn't present as valuable, they don't send out the right messages to their followers.
What am I saying in all this?
Basically, if you're a service provider, trainer, teacher, worker, employee, whatever, and you perceive your time as low value, it's time to change your views. If it is truly low value, do it for free for a while and grow your skills quickly, then, raise your value. People will treat you differently and in a good way.
If you're not a service provider for people but you are a pet owner. Consider the same tactics. Give yourself time to learn what you need about boundaries and bonding, allowing for mistakes to be made with grace. Then, bring your highest valued self to the relationship and be clear, concise, and direct about your goals and outcomes.
It's amazing to me to watch a horse student of mine devalue themselves and present as a poor leader for their horse. The horse walks all over them, taking advantage at every turn. Then... that person raises their value internally and presents as a practiced leader. The difference will blow your mind. The horse immediately begins to respect the leader and even fall in love with the new home environment.
All of the previous problems disappear because that person is no longer selling themselves short, complaining about their fears or lack of skills, or desire to "not hurt the relationship."
The point is... don't sell yourself short. You're perceived poorly this way by the people around you and worse, by yourself. Instead... build yourself up. Not to the massive egotistical fools we see parading around sometimes, but to the realistic, true value, you are capable of offering. You're worth it! Begin to believe in yourself. It will change your life!