While the first step is thereto out all the ways you might be hiding from your money, it’s the next step is where the rubber meets the road.

Here the focus is all on you! Before you clench up your pearly whites in fear and loathing… Relax, Suze Orman sermons have no place in this transformation tale. No heart-tremor and sleepless nights spent in a double punch of regret and shame over that Starbucks Mochaccino indulgence that might have squandered away a fortune.  (Note to the wary: Suze Orman didn’t make her fortune by squirreling away three bucks a day and pinching away pennies of a denied cup of daily Latte, that’s fo’ suh’ !)  Nor would I advocate belated self-flagellation over height- and pocketbook-defying Guiseppe Zanotti stilettos.

After all, white-knuckled self-denial runs counter to the abundant, rich and joyful life we are after here! Let’s hear a collectively-breathed ‘Amen’ please!

So let’s get down to business in Step Two. Admittedly it, too, involves a bit of well-placed pain, but of an entirely different and dare I say altogether more delicious nature:

It ’s the kind of pain you feel during that massage as the therapist hits that tight knot in your shoulder followed by that blissful release as the pain dissolves into a newfound and previously unknown freedom.

It’s not the value lost in that cup of coffee that is at stake here. It is the value lost we, as women mostly, place on ourselves. The value we place in ourselves, our services, products, art, expertise and talents.

Herein lies the problem as well as the solution.

You see, women notoriously, chronically and stubbornly undervalue themselves and what they have to offer the world.  We hide what we have to offer, don’t charge enough and generally are apologetic for placing monetary value on our contributions at all. And it’s because we are so self-effacing and de-valuing what we have to offer, the world treats us in kind.

We are expected to give this for free or charge pennies for what is worth so much more.

Let’s take this a step further: i

If you don’t value yourself and what you have to offer, you deprive the world of your value.

When we chronically undervalue what we have to offer, it is in face a very selfish thing to do.

Have you ever gotten something for free and didn’t value it whereas had you paid a premium you would have placed a premium on it. It’s just human nature.

Its a well-known fact that things you get for free are perceived and treated with much less reverence, and have less of an impact that things or services we pay dearly for.

So if you want to make a difference in the word, if you want your services, talents, contributions be of value to others, you have to value them first.

That doesn’t mean you can’t be generous at times. Generosity can spring out of your overflow. But that’s a very different thing than living out of scarcity and the idea that what you have to offer is not worth a decent amount of money.

Strangest thing happens, when you value yourself, the world values who you are and what you have to offer.

But it takes a perhaps radically shift in perspective:

TASK: write down some service you offer, a piece of art you create, goods you produce or information you provide. Or that you always wanted to create or provide but felt intimidated by the thought of doing it. Write down how much money it makes you. If it’s zero, write that down.

Then decide how much value you’d like to receive for it.

Then look up the most exclusive, luxe version of that service, art, information, product you can find. Is it really that much better than yours? Or is the value primarily based in perception?

A good place to start is to at least in your mind determine a price, a monetary value of your talents. Probably about double as much as you think it’s worth now.

Find a happy sweet spot. You can always change it later and upgrade as you develop how you see your worth and your contributions to the world.

If that’s too hard, start with at least thinking of your talents and contributions in monetary form. This has to do with Step One: stop hiding form money. Stop hiding from your value in terms of money. Look at it, face it and embrace it.

A famous, now middle-aged, but still celebrated model once said about her famous attitude that got her the most lucrative contracts even when she was not the most beautiful and no longer youngest top model around: “You have to walk as if you are something really really expensive that few people could ever afford.”

P.S.: now that she is older she gets paid for her appearances on a TV show a lot more than she ever made in her youth.  Where most would have said she had her run and its over now, she kept on valuing herself, instead of succumbing to the devaluing the world expected from her.

And that’s it right there in a nutshell. Of course she was selling her looks in the fashion world. You might sell your art or expertise. But first you got to value it like something very rare and expensive before the world can see and perceive your true worth.

AFTERWORD: I saw this Chanel poster in the blog post being sold for10,000 $ at a Hollywood flea market and another one similar to that was sold before my eyes for $ 25,000, that’s 25 grand and others were clamoring for it. The stands all-around him sold vintage clothing and art but their price tags were much much lower. I spoke to the guy who sold the posters. He made over 100 grand in just that afternoon. And he is out there every weekend. He is not a great artist, just a guy who knows how to place value on what he’s got.



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