Why Free Can Hurt You In The Long Run!

by Paul Castain on July 14, 2013

What a crazy topic coming from a dude who gives a ton of stuff away!

On my blog alone you will find about 900 free posts.

On iTunes I have 81  free sales lessons via The Sales Playbook Podcast.

I have a page on this website with several free PDF’s and eBooks.

I invite people via Twitter and LinkedIn to ask for my advice when I start the day by saying “Good morning! How can I help someone today?”

There are lots of other free things I offer but here’s the point . . .

People rarely take action on something that’s free and often take it for granted.

Don’t worry, this post isn’t about me feeling unappreciated or wanting to put a stop to giving back. On a personal note, I made a promise when my life was in the crapper back in ‘95 that I would return the favor once my life turned around. I have a debt to pay and as far as I’m concerned that debt won’t be paid until they close the lid on my coffin but . . .

Human nature is such, that we just don’t take the free stuff as seriously as we should and I’m no different by the way.

I have authors who want to send me free books. I decline them because they typically sit on my shelves; unread!

On the other hand, the books I by from Amazon each month are read, notes taken and action items created and completed.

Why?

Because I have a vested interest!

A few years ago, I attended an amazing, free, all day event.

Rock stars like Zig Ziglar, Tom Hopkins and Colin Powell took the stage.

I took what could only be referred too as a sh*tload of notes and filled an entire 80 page spiral notebook with ideas.

And there they stayed . . . never to be acted upon but . . .

Every webinar, seminar and class I’ve paid for since (over $10,000 worth by the way) has been acted upon.

Why?

Because I invested my heart earned cash!

A blogger I follow announced that their book would be available on Amazon. I was pumped.

Then they surprised their readers with a free eBook version and free course. I couldn’t wait and even set an alarm on my phone so I wouldn’t miss the limited offer when it launched.

I was successful in snagging the freebie and then . .

It laid there like a slug in my “To Be Read” file  ever since!

You’re sending yourself a bad message . . .

If you go through life with an unwillingness to invest in yourself, you’re sending your subconscious some bad messages.

1) That you’re not worth it!

2) That you’re not serious about getting better!

Meanwhile, we invest in other companies via stocks/401k

We give to charities and our place of worship but . . .

Somehow, we aren’t important enough to invest in.

I think that’s unfortunate!

“That’s easy for you to say Castain. You do this for a living!”

Actually, you’re right but there was a time when this wasn’t so easy for me to say.

I actually started investing in myself when I was broke and had to rebuild my life.

I started something back then that I still do to this day . . .

Once a month, I invest in the surest investment on the planet . . .

ME!

At times when money was tight, I would only buy a magazine. Other times a CD, a subscription to Audible, books, seminars, webinars and yes, I have coaches.

And not just because I want to continually get better . . .

Because sooner or later we need to get serious and . . .

I’m just not as serious as I should be when it comes to free!

One last thing . . .

Don’t you dare point your finger at your cheap boss for an unwillingness to reimburse you or hire a guy like me to come in and train your team!

That’s a cop out!

YOU are responsible for investing in yourself and quite frankly, YOU need to want your success more than they do!

They owe you nothing . . . YOU owe yourself everything!

If it’s important to you, you’ll find a way.

Start with a magazine, a CD but . . .

Get serious and invest in yourself already!

I think you’re worth it!

  • Pete Primeau

    Great Article Paul! You are right on the money! No pun intended. Well maybe a little bit. I believe the more skin we have in the game the more we strive to implement creative ideas to help grow our business.

  • http://yoursalesplaybook.com paulcastain

    Well stated Pete!

    Thank you!

  • Chris Rollins

    Right on, Paul! I was already thinking that there has to be a vested interest…then I saw you mention that! If all we are willing to invest in ourselves is “free” then our actions are implying that our own awareness of our self-worth isn’t yet where it needs to be. We are the best place we can make an investment in. We can’t give to others what we don’t have. When we invest in ourselves and keep growing we then have the ability to make a bigger impact in others.

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