I’m really big on authentic conversations. Conversations that can change our perspectives. Conversations that help us expand our awareness. What I’m not big on, however, is using these conversations as a platform for driving another person’s “list” to your website.
I was recently invited by a lady to speak in a podcast with a master coach; the topic was on plants and shamanism. She was looking for a shamanic herbalist to speak with, and the conversation was going to take about an hour.
I was really excited and honored to be asked to represent the plant nation on this podcast, so I visited her website to get a better feel for the work that the master coach was involved in. I’m pretty open minded around the concept of contemporary shamans or universal shamanism; the work I do doesn’t follow any particular tradition. Earth Medicine concepts and practices come directly from my allies and spirit teachers, my ancestors, and trusted teachers, no matter their cultural affiliation. I didn’t see anything on her website that turned me off, even though we do not practice the same way.
When I responded that I would love to have this conversation and that the timing worked for me, this lady who works on behalf of the master coach said that she was in conversation with several herbalists, so she needed to know “the size of my list” to make sure it fits in with their guidelines.
So basically the purpose of this speaking inquiry that I received from this lady was to drive my list over to their website so that you all could not only hear me on this podcast, but also so that you will be on their email list. That way they can talk to you about the work that they do, etc. Their existing list would hear me speak and give them an opportunity to come to my website and learn all about what I do.
It’s called Joint Venture Marketing. Look it up. It’s a thing. Obviously it is also a thing with shamanism now.
To say I had a moment of WTF is an understatement. I don’t have one. single. thing. against JV marketing. In fact, if I totally believe in a product, a concept, a person’s work in the world and so forth, I will more than likely make sure you are exposed to it, either here or via some social platform, and I hope that others would do the same with me and my work. If you want me to promote your work, here’s how you can get me to do that for you:
- Let me get to know you a bit before you ask me to tell everyone how wonderful you are.
- Invite me to take a class or a workshop with you so that I can give you a testimonial or proper feedback. I need experience with you and your work before I start singing your praises to my “list”.
- If we’re going to have a business relationship, let’s establish that from the beginning. I take my work very seriously and I am willing to think with my business hat on.
When it comes to sharing my list with another business and vice versa, (and by the way, I don’t consider y’all my “list”. You’re people who also love and appreciate the work of my heart, and I honor you for that.) I think there may be a better, more authentic way for this exchange to take place.
This made me question how I would like to get my work further out in the world. I want to have these good, healing conversations about our plant and tree nations, our animal allies and the deep personal healing and transformation that comes with reconnecting with nature. I WANT these conversations to happen, whether I am the human who represents these nations or whether it’s someone else. From a business perspective, I would also love to meet and interact with more people who love these Earth Medicine concepts and practices, and who would like to work with me.
It’s a tricky situation when one’s work is of a spiritual nature. Much of my work can be considered spiritual; I practice shamanic healing, energy work and teach spiritual and emotionally empowering workshops, and I also am co director of Sisters in Celebration, which has an online experiential program that teaches people how to develop their spiritual practices, and another program that teaches them how to be in service to others. We charge for these classes. I charge for everything I do. Some people would have issue with that. I don’t.
So the moral of this story is that, yes. I would love to figure out how to have authentic conversations and develop right relationship with more people at the same time. Until then, I will work on creating something for you, my friends, on plant spirit medicine.
Would you like me to address any questions you have around plant spirit medicine? Send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org or reach out to me on Facebook by September 30, 2015, and I will include your questions in my recording. And thanks for being with me. ~D