Grief Coaching, Money Making and Other Thorny Things
I do not do things like other coaches. And I am continually frustrated by reading how I can make millions convincing clients that they cannot survive without me forever and ever.
I have problems with this on so many levels, I hardly know where to begin.
Firstly, I am a Grief Coach. I support and counsel people who are heartbroken – numb- raw. They do not want to be marketed to or patronized. They do not want to pay $5000 for anything, like having a personal Grief Coach at their side for three days, which was suggested to me recently. They have just probably spent more than triple that for a funeral and burial. The vast majority of people have not pre-planned, and so I see GoFundMe campaigns and the like pop up on my newsfeed on a regular basis. So if they end up with a copy of my book or just want to talk for an hour or watch a low-cost video to help them keep their footing, that is just fine.
Secondly, playing to people’s fears and weaknesses goes against everything I believe in down to my bones. Whether from grief or from feeling beaten down by life or being shocked by trauma, people are vulnerable to suggestion and misuse. Hitting people up for thousands in those moments is simply not right.
Thirdly, I categorically disagree with the premise that if people valued their happiness and future enough, they would “find the money.” Such guilt-tripping and manipulation is just wrong, I’m sorry. Yet I am also regularly told that if I do not manipulate potential clients in this way, I am not valuing my own practice or my offerings. Then the message is that I will never make a living if I don’t fashion my practice this way. More guilt and manipulation.
I do have a couple of clients who are quite well off, for whom I am grateful. But the vast majority are not – they are supporting families, they are on tight budgets, they may have little savings or they have health issues that eat into their bottom line constantly. I simply do not believe that their peace of mind in times of crisis, or moving their lives to the next level, is about spending thousands of dollars – that should be available for a reasonable cost to anyone who wants it.
What helps people is direct care, individualized listening and holding space for those who are suffering. Will I offer higher ticket items to those who can afford it? Of course – I am a businesswoman, and everyone deserves to have their needs met. But I have to put being a Human Being first, or I have no business doing what I am doing. So I will continue offering compassionate services at reasonable prices for any and all who come my way. I simply cannot do anything else.