Is Our Society Doomed?

To avoid my 1st Amendment rights being squashed again on Facebook, I figured I’d jump over here to WordPress and hope that it stays. You see, just yesterday someone “flagged” several of my posts on Facebook as being “inappropriate”. I call them REAL LIFE. But, instead of getting irritated, I said, “That’s okay. Let me sum them ALL up for you….”, so I did.

That summary is below

I am often beyond saddened & disgusted over the state of our society, here in the USA and across the world. Many could argue that the cruel, insensitive, unkind, murderous, savage-minded people deserve what they have coming to them (karma?), however most people I know would agree that animals really never deserve the way they are treated. Is it just me or does China lead the world in cruelty to animals and people? Or is are all Asian countries ruthlessly heartless?

To my sensitive readers… this post is 100% MY personal opinion. If you don’t like it, don’t bother to comment because I really don’t care if you like my opinions or not. Bottom line is that I may have a lot of people remove themselves from my friends list, and that’s OK too. It’s one way to see who my true friends are, lol.

On the other hand, I may gain more followers since I am often told by others, “Wow, you have the courage to actually speak what I only think yet am too afraid to actually say”.

Whether you stay or go, if you don’t know why I have a strong opinion on these types of topics, you obviously don’t know me very well at all, so let me enlighten you in a nutshell…

Although I have forgiven everyone in my past, and haven’t been “triggered” in decades, that does not mean that I did not experience decades of trauma starting at birth (adoption), or that I was bullied so badly as a kid and had my first serious suicide attempt at age 9. Or that, when I was 11, I was almost gang raped and tied naked to a tombstone overnight. Then, throughout my childhood and teen years, I was abused in pretty much every way from those closest to me as well as peers, and sooo much more. 

Then, as a young adult, I escaped a very abusive marriage, out-smarted a hired gun, and raised my two kids alone while running from a 10-year stalker who was also a convicted child predator. This predator also posed as a cop and followed me & my kids to several states.

Even with two Master’s degrees and a doctorate, I was then reverse-discriminated against and completely blackballed from working in mainstream mental health throughout Maricopa County where I live because (quote), “Your ethics are just too strong” (WHAT?!). Plus people who interview me usually have much less education and experience and one has even told me that she wouldn’t hire me because I should be her supervisor. Apparently brains intimidate many people! I could go on and on about that, and bring forth others treated the exact same way by the exact same agencies but that serves no purpose than to chain myself to the past.

steve jobs quote

On the flipside, I always preferred paramilitary settings and despite the black-balling in the mental health “gen pop”, I was able to consistently work in jails and prisons as a Forensic Mental Health Professional and currently work in a maximum security men’s prison. So, as an international forensic handwriting and body language expert, I have spent over 30 years total in the forensics and criminology fields.

Although I was not a “people person” per se, I have always felt absolute empathy for anyone who has experienced any kind of trauma as a child or adult. That’s why I have been passionate for my entire life about helping others heal and find light in their darkest moments. Of course, I can’t take all the credit – I had enormous assistance from God, the individual’s own spirituality, and my Clinical Graphology program.

Yet during my 30+ years in forensics, I also experienced and saw things that most of the public has only seen on TV or in movies. In other words, I have seen the RAW TRUTH of the unbelievable, pure unimaginable and beyond-incomprehensible things people have done – and continue to do – to animals and each other. Often this is done so in the name of ego, politics, greed, religion, money, “bad genes”, and just plain selfishness.

I also feel that a LOT of the problems in our world started with music that is full of disrespectful (& often gruesome) lyrics, violent video games, drugs, the wimpy schools who look the other way when those who are bullied seek help, the mental health system full of coddling social workers who allow the mentally ill person to blame everyone else for their unhappiness (I am talking about those who abuse the systems, not those who truly seek help), and other “community” programs who allow people to be enabled by disability / food stamps / unemployment. ADD TO THAT… the DUMMYING DOWN (allowing kids with a 4th grade reading level to graduate!) in public schools (Carlos Mencia has it 100% correct), and the criminal justice system who often slaps people on the wrists without ever truly holding them accountable. ADD TO THAT…those professionals we were once able to trust – like that of police, teachers, clergy – who are now raping our youth, beating their spouse, and in other ways hiding behind the badge. This makes it difficult for GOOD, ETHICAL professionals to survive (could this be related to the once-again, recent upswing in law enforcement officer suicides?).

ADD TO THAT… the parents who have stopped parenting as soon as kids threatened to call “child protective services” whenever they did try to parent… and then those seeming “deaf, dumb and blind” parents / grandparents who truly believe “my kid would never do that”

ADD TO THAT… Netflix is starting to remove Christian movies, and cater to what others call “anti-christian” movies, and that may be the exact thing that led to the creation of Pureflix. Who knows…

ADD TO THAT… we seem to be regressing back into the “racial segregation”, yet we are all of mixed ethnicities and every female alive has African DNA (which means so does everyone else since a woman gave birth to them). ADD TO THAT… people can no longer look inside of their pants and tell what gender they are, and ADD TO THAT… the recent upswing of Christian villagers who are being killed and their Churches and Bibles destroyed.

ADD TO THAT… a selfish younger generation who often seem to have ZERO ethics, integrity, or respect for older generations or authority. ADD TO THAT… customer service where I rarely get quality service anywhere, meaning that most food is not the way I ordered, representatives on the phone and in person are rude, etc…. and ADD TO THAT… the fact that when KIDS / TEENS kill animals they are “future serial killers”, yet when ADULTS kill animals, they are “sportsmen”. Yes, I too am a sometimes meat-eater and I struggle with this a lot (so to help, I thank the animals during prayer for giving its life to help sustain mine). I understand the “over-population” of wild animals, but we can end an animal’s life humanely, and that is largely not being done!!

ADD TO THAT… sports professionals (ie: NFL) get paid ridiculous amounts of money to throw balls around and run across fake grass, while people literally living down the street from them are starving to death. I feel sports are just one of the many distractions to keep us all “ignorant”. ADD TO THAT… that we are all victims in some way of “repression” (use of force to subdue something or someone), “oppression” (a prolonged period of maltreatment), and “suppression” (putting a stop to something like standing up and speaking about these things).

Anyway… admittedly, none of us are perfect but as you know… THE LIST GOES ON & ON

And YES, I know much of this cruelty occurred since the beginning of time and has only been outed by the internet, news, and social media.

However I’m glad they are…

People used to say to me, “I don’t understand why you don’t trust people”.

So I am glad that the truth is finally out here and in our faces. Because hiding behind all “fluffy” posts is not real, it’s not genuine. So, I vote for NO MORE blind ignorance because ignorance is not bliss. Ignorance allows the things we hate to continue.

It is anger, irritation, and frustration combined with passion that create change.

So, is it really so difficult to see why I feel so passionately about these things?

I’ve always considered myself very apolitical but now, after rereading this I’m beginning to think I should run for politics, lol. Then again, because of my satirical and often blunt comments, and strong personality, I’d probably be killed by my opponent or POTUS, lol.

Finally, as for Facebook – I hate it and always have. If I could figure out viable options (and I have tried several times) other than Facebook for the only 2 reasons I am on there, I would not be on there at all.  So until Facebook is wiped out like MySpace was (which I hope is very soon!), I’m stuck there.

hatred fear love


Here is something I found online that someone I do not know shared on July 11th… 

In your opinion, do comments like this help or hurt society? Are they true or offensive? Are we losing control as a society? I’d really like to know your thoughts. 


Disconnecting from Toxic Family Members

A common goal of my clients at the beginning of every new year is “Disconnecting from Toxic Family Members”.

Here is my advice for them:

TOXIC PEOPLE ARE NOT FIXABLE SO DON’T TRY. The way toxic people act is because of an internal struggle they bear inside of themselves but is taken out on those around them, or their target.

It is not your place to “fix” them, and they often have no idea why they feel the way they do, do the things they do, and hurt the people they hurt. Yet, they continue to do it; this in no way makes what they do justifiable.

There are also those toxic people with personality disorders who understand what their heinous words and actions do to others, but find their behavior defensible. Of course, it never really is, but in their minds they will always find a way to justify the means.

Toxic individuals are aware of the chaos they create around them. Some do so intentionally, others may be good people who do not know how to exist in the world without forcing others (you) to compromise their (your) happiness to their infliction.

Toxic people create drama and live in a world of negativity. They are essentially addicted to the drama – the negativity – the toxicity. When life is calm, it is disorienting so it doesn’t last long. Creating an argument, or turning a tiny issue into a huge verbal battle, is sure to bring their unhappy world and mindset right back. SO, take a hard look and decide for yourself if you can tolerate their behavior for a lifetime – because it will likely never go away… OR if its time to make your own well-being a priority.

This may mean that you distance yourself from this person by spending less time with them, not sharing personal information, or disconnecting entirely – temporarily or permanently.

YOU HAVE A RIGHT TO CREATE A HEALTHY (& HAPPY) LIFE FOR YOURSELF and there will come a time when you say, “enough is enough.” You are a person who deserves to be treated with love and respect. You cannot possibly grow if the sunshine is always being snuffed out by a raging storm.

You will not love yourself or live a positive, flourishing life – a life you absolutely deserve – in the wake of a toxic person who purposefully hurts you and keeps you from true happiness.

TAKE A LOOK AT WHAT YOU ALLOW: these toxic individuals often manipulate, lie, are passive-aggressive, hurtful, or physically abusive, yet continue to act this way because you allow it in your life.

What are you doing to stand up for yourself and to stop the way they treat you? How do you react when they disrespect and hurt you? What is the toxic person’s reaction when you choose to stand up to them? When you confront a toxic person, do not expect it to go smoothly. 

Because they often take your distance as a personal attack, an insult if you will, or rejection, you will often see manipulation at it’s finest. A family member will often play the victim and try to corral other family members against you because they feel you have hurt them. They may use their emotions to influence other family members and isolate you, and they may treat you harshly in return. It is common to expect lies, victim stories with you being the “bad guy”.

Toxic people will often flat out lie about what you have gone through and why you are disconnecting from them. They will usually make up new stories to disarm your interpretation of the truth and will seek to redirect the indictments they feel you are accusing them of. Again, to make them appear to be the victim.

The things the toxic person says, what those around her will say to you and accuse you of may make you feel like the crazy person. Know that the redirection is just another manipulation to make you question the validity of your claims, recollection of your account of events, and even question your own emotions. You may even feel that you are crazy, overreacting, or dramatic.

Do not question yourself. You have every right to stand up for your well-being, for your emotions, and for your sanity. It does not matter if it’s a family member or a friend, you do not have to tolerate toxic behavior when it affects your well being.

NO KIND OF ABUSE IS EVER TOLERABLE. Anyone who physically hurts another is likely breaking the law and there are consequences for their actions. If someone if emotionally manipulating, bullying and abusing you, know that you deserve better and that it’s OK to let go and walk away – whether from your parents, siblings, adult children, or another family member

No amount of love, forgiveness, guilt, grief or prayer will fix a person who is broken and purposefully hurting another (you) because of the rush they get from inflicting chaos and pain. The person you need to save is yourself.

Practicing self-love and self-care every day will feel like a new concept, but over time, you week see and feel it was the right step towards a new and fulfilling life.

The time it takes to heal from walking away from a toxic person may be swift but other times, it can take years and cycles of anger, grief, sadness, relief and finally contentment. The human mind likes to know “why” but trying to find the ‘why’ to the actions of a toxic person is usually a fruitless journey. It is one you will inevitably try to figure out for yourself, but in order to let go, you must be okay in likely never knowing those answers. Don’t give your personal power to trying to figure it out, that only serves to prevent the healing of your “scars”.

They have no justification for the way they are and the things they do and cope with the fact you aren’t like them. Are you prepared to let go – temporarily or permanently – and are you prepared for the fallout from potentially other family members or friends? How do you know when to walk away from family? Are you ready to start letting go of family?

Will you be able to continue to remind yourself that YOU are valuable when you are cycling through the stages of letting go? When you feel like giving in and picking up (or answering) your phone, can you be strong enough to know that the journey is long and hard, and each time you want to give in, it WILL get easier?

The way you feel is important and, if this is the journey you choose to take and in all the loneliness and heartbreak of it, know that you are not alone – there is support. More importantly, there are so many people like you who have chosen to be incredibly brave and embark on the path of their own happiness, just like you.


1). When the relationship is based in any kind of abuse, mentally, physically, sexually, verbally or emotionally. When the relationship is based in manipulation, overt or covert, you can be sure you are being used and abused. When you are living in constant anxiety never knowing or being able to predict how any engagement is going to turn out, it is time to love yourself enough to let go.

2). When the only contact you have with them is negative. The contact you have with them serves to bring you down, put you down and/or make you feel you are not good enough, or you haven’t done enough for them.

3). When the relationship creates so much stress that it affects the important areas of your life at work, home or both. When your emotions are totally caught up in defending yourself and wanting to explain yourself, and the chaos of your relationships with these people is all you talk about, it is time to let go.

4). If you find yourself trying to right the wrong’s (gossip they told about you), and you are constantly being ostracized to the point you lose sleep over it, you have been poisoned with their toxicity. Gossip only serves one family member, the one telling it. Yet you can be left feeling defenseless against the false beliefs about yourself. There is usually a ring leader gathering the troops for the assault and because they are joined together, you begin to wonder whether it is you who has or is the problem.

5). When the relationship is completely all about the other person and there is no real reason why the other person cannot make any effort toward the health and maintenance of the relationship with you. One sided relationships are set up for your failure. When you realize there is never going to be an “enough” place for you to reach in the relationship, you need to let go and start to focus on your own healing. Remember you should never be more invested in someone’s life than they are.

6). When and whether the relationship is only about borrowing, or needing money.

7). When crazy-making, no-win games dominate the relationship (ie: silent treatment, blame-games, no-win arguments that spin around on you), there is no point in continuing in this battle. Verbal warfare is never the place you will convince them of anything and these kinds of verbal interactions are set up to be their way or the highway.

One CLASSIC sign of a conversation or piece of advice going nowhere is when your well-intended help is met with “Yeah, but…”. 


1). You Feel Sad And Down Around Them

2). You Feel Angry Around Them

3). You Don’t Want To Go See Them

4). You Find Yourself Having To Take Care Of Them

5). You Feel Drained Around Them

6). You Feel Numb Around Them

7). You Can’t Say Anything Right Around Them

8). You Feel Forced To Be Around Them

9). You Feel Unlike Yourself Around Them

10). You Feel Like They Control The Relationship

Unlike healthy relationships, which have highs and lows, and struggles now and then, a toxic relationship is poison to the people involved. The excuse of “being blood” or “being family” is no excuse. Families should be safe havens for the people within them, a shelter of love, hope, support, and affection in a vast world.


Aside from no longer putting yourself in the path of constant maltreatment, you will likely enjoy:

~~ A sense of peace (all the jitters of constantly expecting an emotional ambush will be gone.)
~~ A sense of empowerment (for the first time, you may be protecting yourself.)
~~ A sense of being a real grown-up (no longer having your life dictated by anyone else (ie: toxic parents)
~~ Freedom (to make your own choices)
~~ Holidays you can enjoy (without the drama, the demands, the painful interactions)
~~ A sense of being more authentically “you”
~~ A better use of time (in doing what you want)
~~ Growing more comfortable in your skin
~~ Discovering new facets of your personality which were buried under the toxicity.
~~ New fulfilling relationships with emotionally healthy people
~~ Joy in being untethered (emotionally)
~~ A voice that speaks the truth
~~ A voice that says what you don’t like, what you do, what hurts you, what gives you joy—all without fear of repercussions
~~ A better view of the world (and less feeling like the world is going to ambush you with its demands, pains, and abuse)

Some of these benefits will come immediately from putting a halt to the toxic relationships while other benefits, such as finding one’s voice and living without a notion of guilt, may take time and even therapy…

People who come out of deeply toxic relationships often have a form of PTSD, so the movement from feeling run over and emotionally exhausted to feeling happy can take time, patience, and support. Be sure not to rush it and to nuture yourself.

BOTTOM LINE? Choose You. Choose Happiness and Peace. Choose Your Emotional Well-Being.

Should You Work for Barter, Fee, or Free?

When close friends or family members have a small concern, I am usually quick to offer a bit of advice. Like a great friend, I do care about them and am usually eager to help if they ask.

However there is a fine line between people seeking true assistance and those taking advantage of me. Yep, friends and family are typically the quickest to do so by expecting more and more. The fact that they may not deliberately or consciously know they are doing it does not change the fact that they do. Then, when I cut them off, they get pissed at ME!

Therefore I am writing this post so that I can refer others to it as needed. In fact, perhaps this post can be the voice for other professionals who may lack the courage to just say…

You see, since the early 1990’s I have attracted four main types of people and I’d like to introduce you to each of them:

TYPE #1: “I just like free things because they are cool”.

TYPE #2: “I never talk to her but I need something, so I’ll give her a call, shoot the shit for a bit, and then ask for a hand-out”.

TYPE #3: “I bet she, or her husband or kids would like the services I provide, so I will ask her to trade or barter her services for mine”.

TYPE #4: “I realize she has a vast amount of knowledge and skills. I also understand she prices her services in the range of her value, just as any other professional does. I have no problem paying these prices because I recognize the value that this service can bring into my life”.

Let me digress for a bit…

I entered my forensic career internationally on June 1, 1987. As a young female, I was trying to break into the male-dominated field of law enforcement as a case consultant, expert witness, and trainer. Because of this, nobody would hire me without references.

So, in this case, I had something of value to give but I also truly needed something of value in return. So for 5 years I worked 100% for free and ended up with dozens of reference letters from law enforcement agencies around the country. Obviously that trade made sense because it launched the rest of my career.

Then in 1994, a so-called “marketing guru” said that I should give away a *unique* freebie on my website to invoke more business from the private sector since most of my work was government and business entities. This “guru” said I was missing out on a “huge amount of private buyers”.

So, that’s what I did.

From 1994 – 1999, I offered a FREE personality snapshot on my website. This was fondly called a “quickie” and was based on my professional yet very quick, less than 1 minute analysis of their handwriting. It truly was free – no catch – no newsletter sign-ups or any other requirement other than to submit their handwriting to me.

During those 5 years, I performed 2,103 personality snapshots. That’s over 35 each month (over 1 per day). My regular price for these at that time was $10 each. So in essence, in 5 years, I gave away over $21,000 in professional value. 

When I returned their results via email, they were given a 10% discount on a full personality profile (again recommended by the “guru” which was considered the norm during the early-1990s), which at the time was only $99. The only catch was that they had to order it within 7 days or the coupon would expire (create a sense of urgency said the “guru”).

Of those 2,103 people, guess how many took advantage of the discount and upgraded to the full personality profile?

Guess how many replied and said a simple “Thank you”?

Same answer for both…

So, to be clear, I gave away over 250 hours of work and over $21,000 and got absolutely nothing in return, not even a simple thank you.

That is not a win-win or mutually-beneficial exchange! One person took all (them), and one person gave all (me).

That is when I stopped working for free unless it benefited me or my business in such a way that it was a no-brainer (just like the reference letters in 1987).

Now fast forward to the early 2000’s.

When I moved back to my home state of Arizona, I needed to restart or relaunch my business locally, in a new city. Once again, bartering and flat-out working for free was a smart move – but only sometimes! In doing so, I made great connections, built great relationships that are still ongoing, and acquired actual paid clients. Of course, not every one of these “barter or free ventures” was sensible. The ones that weren’t, were “one and done”.

Now, a small digression again…

Between 2009 – 2017 something else all-too-frequently occurred.

While on a date with my husband, or hanging out with my adult children, someone (usually friends) would approach me and ask me to analyze their handwriting or the writing of someone who was with them. I know this was not done out of ill-intention; however, it really did offend me for two reasons and these were my thoughts:

  • I am a type A personality and workaholic – I work about 126 hours per week on average. On the extremely rare occasion that I am on personal time, please do not be inconsiderate and expect me to work; and…

  • What makes you think I even want to analyze you? I mean, I certainly do not need the practice (okay, that was somewhat wit but also true)

It had become soooooo irritating to me that I started to cancel date night, and stopped hanging out in public with my kids. I also started developing resentment toward others, and started to hate the career I dedicated my life to for decades.

In fact, one day I had a slight emotional breakdown due to the stress of this occurring sooooo often. I poured a very large glass of wine and said to my husband, You know, if I was terrible at this field, nobody would ask me for free shit all the time”.

Being the supportive guy he is, he said, “Well, it’s because you make it look easy. But if it’s affecting you that badly, do something about it”.

So I did…. I had a mobile parody app developed. This mobile app is not for people who are serious, but it IS for those mentioned above. Having this app available has saved me a TON of headaches and irritation. Yes there are “bad” reviews but that’s because they are those who want the true scientific results for little or nothing. However for those who are serious about having a professional help them, there are options.

How do I know if they are serious or not?

The answer is simple. They either become a paying client or they say something like…

“I just think it’s cool”, “I find it fascinating”, etc.

If they ask in text or email, I reply with THIS LINK. If they ask me in person, I give them a verbal synopsis of that same page.

If they are serious, I give them my business card so they can schedule or order accordingly. So far each “serious” individual has become a paid client, without question.
After having to do this to the “free-seekers” about 10 times (often to the same “repeat offenders”), it started to work remarkably well. Yet through it all, I have learned some valuable lessons  including, but definitely not limited to:
  • Those 2,103 personality snapshots went to people who were much like my family members and friends – asking for and / or expecting “freebies”. To me, it clearly shows that they did not find value in my skill or career.

  • I questioned my own self-worth – wondering if it was so low that I allowed this to go on for so long.  I wondered, “if I don’t see my own value after all of that, how could I expect anyone else to?”

  • As an interesting experiment, I have kept track of how many of those business cards I have handed out and have followed up with them just to see if they ever downloaded the app. Want to venture a guess? You’re right… ZERO.

Yep, these people are just like those 2,103 others only this time, I don’t give a damn because I am no longer giving away my skills, knowledge, time, or… value.

People tend to only value what they pay for or invest in.

In my situation, if someone truly has a need to have a handwriting sample analyzed – maybe to assess for suicidal tendencies, for dating or matchmaking, hiring, or to do a pre-termination violence assessmentthey will pay for it because they know it’s value.

If people are truly curious about what I would have said during the “personality snapshot” that they expected for free during my date nights, they would download the app for a one-time $2.99 fee.

If they don’t download the app, that confirms that I did the right thing by referring them to THIS PAGE. Had I not had this app developed, I may have continued to waste more of my valuable time, effort, and money on “coolness” and “intrigue”.

People want the solution but don’t want to do the work. People want the professionals to “fix it” yet don’t want to pay for it. If you think experts are expensive, wait until you hire an amateur!

That leads me to this… 

Many in the business of spiritual products or services will say, “I work for love donations” as if that makes them sound modest or like a modern-day version of Mahatma Gandhi.

Unless they are 100% debt-free and have absolutely no living expenses, that sounds like pure “100% phooey” to me. But let’s say that’s true… that they do really only work for love donations… most of those people also work a “regular j.o.b.” so does that mean they don’t make enough with their “gifts”?

Bottom line, in my decades of experience, I have noticed the following repeatedly:

  • many people do not like to pay for anything yet expect the service to be done anyway, especially those who work in the “spirituality” industries.
  • many spiritual people think I should not charge for my work yet are some of the most financially-lacking people I have ever met.
  • Many do not want to pay for advertising, yet complain they have no clients. Instead, they expect the other person to agree to a barter.
  • Make no mistake, I have some amazing friends who work in the spiritual fields and these friends are several steps above the vast majority. My friends are completely excluded from those mentioned in this post so, if you want a referral, just ask!

Yes, I too have done a lot of work in the spiritual circles. In fact, my tagline is always “bringing science to the psychics”. Even so, my mindset has always “this is business – pure and simple”.

I know this may shock you but, in case you hadn’t noticed, you are not the Son of Man and you do live in a monetary society, like it or not.

If you pay attention to the motivational speaker, Jim Rohn’s, comment “You are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with”, then hanging out with financially-struggling people will certainly put you on the fast train toward financial struggles as well.

Hate to pick on the spiritual people again but it’s true – this seems to be especially in the spiritual context of careers. We have to be careful not to get sucked into the ‘you should not charge people if you are truly spiritual’ theory. Of course, there is obviously nothing wrong with that concept, if it’s done with passion and not false modesty.

Unfortunately for me, bartering and working for free does not pay my bills.

If you find yourself stuck in that “free is beautiful” mindset, this may help:

  • Look at the commonalities of the 5 people you are spending the most time with. Are they always looking for handouts, shopping at Goodwill because they have to (who doesn’t like a random thrift experience for fun?), always in a negative “victim” mindset, talking about having no money, OR are they happy, financially successful, and assertive in pursuing their passions?

When I look back to my most financially-low times, the 5 people were definitely in the doghouse financially too. Yet, when I looked back at the most successful, achievement-oriented, financially-stable times, the 5 people matched that vibe as well.

So, if you want to go from free and bartering to financially independent I recommend:

  • Looking at your own money-mindset. Are you saying to the Universe, “Will work for free”?  If so, you will very likely attract only those clients who will keep you working for free. After all, God / the Universe wants to give you what you want.

Now you may be wondering… is bartering EVER okay?



If you are starting a business, or trying to launch into a second career, or build a portfolio of web designs or photography, working for free or bartering may be perfect for you, just as it was for me back in 1987.

If you truly do want something that the other person wants, and you would have purchased it anyway, by all means… go for it.

But if you are bartering because you don’t want to offend someone or for a reason that is not a “definite need” in your life, I highly recommend that you say “NO” (nicely of course). Oh and never barter or do things for free just because they are family or friends. Any entrepreneur you ask will likely agree that your paid clients do not usually come from family or friends.

So, if you want to stop working for free and barter, start by making a commitment – a promise to yourself – that you will stop. However, when you do – as with any major change you are going to make – be prepared that your previous and often chronic “free seekers” may put up resistance. They may think it is “only a phase” or you are “having a bad day”, and if you stick to your commitment, they will likely get mad at you!

If this occurs, you will likely start feeling guilty and question your decision. Stick to your guns (they’ll likely get over it eventually) but also prepare for a test from God / the Universe.

For example, I make all major business changes on my business anniversary date of June 1st. Several years ago when I decided to stop bartering entirely, within that week, I had three people ask if I’d be willing to barter. I had to say “no” to each of them without hesitation because otherwise the God / the Universe would know I was not being accountable to my own value, and was essentially breaking the promise I made to myself.

No “case-by-case” basis either because that is like making an excuse for yourself to barter. To God / the Universe it’s one and the same; you are either serious about it or you are not – it really is that simple.

So, after gracefully turning down those last 3 offers, within the following month, I had taken on 6 more fully-paid clients. Yes, I have had to say “no” to many requests and expectations of free and / or bartering offers from family, friends, and mere acquaintances. When I say “no” they think I’m joking because we are friends or family. If they are reading this and are still in doubt, here is my final answer… nope, I’m really not joking.


I have talked with my husband and adult children in detail as to what we would barter for.

Here is the list:

  • My daughter: new kitchen cabinets, new living room floor tile or carpet.

  • My son: pay off his brand new car.

  • My husband and I: pay off our two brand new cars and my $150K student loan.

If you can do any of those, we will gladly barter. If you can’t, we won’t – simply because we do not need or want anything else.

Stick to your own value because, when you pay for products and services, you are telling the professional that you respect his or her work. 

When someone pays you for your products or services, they are telling you that they respect you and your work.

QUICK QUESTION: When was the last time you bartered with your doctor, dentist, lawyer, plumber, landlord, utility company, cell phone provider, mechanic, or any other professional? 

Yeah, didn’t think so.

  • Just like them, I am a professional.

  • Just like them, I get paid for my work.

  • Just like them, I am not free, available for barter, or cheap.

  • Just like them, I and my knowledge and skills are valuable.

If you are looking for a few graceful ways to say “no”, Marie Forleo’s video may help…

P.S. Only you can decide your own value. As for me, I only work with people who are willing to pay for my services. If someone pays and then flakes, there are no refunds. Instead the funds are donated to the Journey Fund on their behalf.


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