Welcome to ‘The Switch’. Our latest series that focuses on the troubles and tribulations of being an adult in and around our 30s. Instead of feeling lost in a world that feels so different but is constantly compared to how our parents grew up, this series will be tackling topics for those who are about to or just turned 30 to help prepare them for their new and exciting life. From money to friendships to business and beyond, check back each month to see how you can use these tips to switch into this new milestone with ease and confidence.
There’s no roadmap to starting a spiritual business. When making the decision to open a healing practice, offering Reiki to individuals and groups, I didn’t know where to begin. My friends and previous colleagues with whom I worked with at technology firms couldn’t offer sound advice. There wasn’t really a class you could take on this sort of thing. My curiosity and passion kept pulling me to explore different ways of making it work—So I had to figure things out for myself.
For seven years I had a career working in start-ups, mostly in sales and account management roles. I really like talking to people, understanding what their needs are and being able to help problem solve. On the other hand, I was always interested in learning about different ways of leading people through heart-based work. I studied to become a yoga teacher in 2012, which led to Reiki mastership in 2015, also spending time as a Birth Doula in 2016. I always thought I needed to do these things on the side either in the evening or on the weekend. I just didn’t have the confidence to be a “freelance witch” as a friend of mine calls it. After turning 30 and feeling like my career was at a standstill, I finally took the plunge to start my own healing practice. Deciding to leave the corporate world behind was a hard decision, but I haven’t felt happier since stepping fully into being an energy healer.
I’m still figuring out what my formula is and how to attract clients, I think this part will always be evolving, to be honest. Here’s a simple guide on what you can do to launch your heart-based business from someone who just did it.
Connect with Wellness Entrepreneurs
I knew that I needed a support system of fellow healers that were just starting out, too. While the flexibility of working from home or in cafes has been amazing, I also thrive on collaboration, encouragement and constructive criticism. Knowing I wanted to widen my network of other healers in NYC, I connected with a breathwork healer, stylist, designer, and coach who all were looking for the same level of growth and income. I had never met before some of these women before, so I was introducing myself over email or asking for an introduction from a friend. Don’t be shy! People are much friendlier than you think they are, and from my experience, they’re really excited to hear you’re in the same boat as them. I made a point to get dinner or grab a drink with each of these women on a weekly basis over the first two months to discuss what I’m working on, to celebrate positive wins, and to offer advice and discuss how we could help each other connect the dots.
Having a cup of coffee with someone who also has a well-established practice is a great way to determine what I logistically needed. I met Jordan Pagan of Ostara Apothecary last winter randomly when I was shopping for a dress at a vintage store. She was offering mini-tarot readings at the time which is how we started talking and I experienced what an intuitive gift she has. Fast forward four months, I found her card at the bottom of my purse and decided to send her an email to see if she was open to consulting me on getting started with my business. Jordan gave me excellent advice on everything from what insurance to purchase (yes, there is special insurance for energy workers) and having set office hours to respond to clients.
What we are all doing is hard work, sharing to elevate other women and receiving guidance from my peers felt like we’re all working together in some way.
Sharing Yourself Online is Essential
Prior to starting my business, I reserved posting anything about myself online to primarily vacation photos and pictures of food. #introvert. When a friend of mine who specializes in marketing told me it was essential to post at least one thing a day, I went into a full-on panic mode. “But like, do I really have to do this?” I protested. “Marketing is just a way for people to find you,” he said. “If you want to do this full time, you need to start connecting with an audience that resonates with you and your offering.”
I decided to focus on two platforms. The first being Instagram, which I’ll admit, has been a lot of fun once I got into it. I think of this social media app as more so as a Live Journal, where I share my thoughts, revelations, triumphs, what’s healing me and what I’m learning. I’ve also forged friendships and collaborations with other healers through the app. Another exciting outcome from Instagram is finding guests to interview for my podcast 7 Directions, where I speak with entrepreneurs, makers, and healers to discuss the business of wellness.
The second form of communication was through a monthly newsletter where I offer updates on previous podcast episodes, and information on my own modality of energy work called Heal Haiku which combines my love of Reiki and haiku poems. Having a newsletter is a great way to hold myself accountable. I really look at each month through a new lens in terms of what I want to accomplish, what I’m doing and who I’m excited to speak with. For someone who likes to work on multiple projects at once, a newsletter is a great way to keep everyone updated, which reminds clients to book with me.
Don’t Sell Yourself Short Because You’re New
This is a big one. In the beginning, when I had zero clients and so much desire to work with people, I wanted to say yes to everything even if it was unpaid. My advice is to only make exceptions if a fellow healer wants to do an exchange with you. I’ve done exchanges with some really talented healers which has been a great way to explore new modalities and make sure I’m making time for self-care.
Good boundaries are going to help you and your clients feel safe and to know what to expect. This can be a tricky area for healers and usually happens by over giving to prove your worth. Remember, this is a business and money is energy. You’ll start to feel depleted in your doing too many things for free without getting compensated for it. Another best practice is to start and end your sessions on time and have a set length of time per session, (30, 60, 90 minutes).
When deciding what to charge for one-on-one sessions and groups rates, do some market research. Know what other healers are offering in your area and experience level. More importantly, what would be a price point that would make you feel satisfied to receive. Having a spiritual practice takes time to build. With the right intention and patience, you’ll eventually start making good traction.
For more insight on my wellness journey, or if you want to be the next guest on my podcast visit laurengrisanti.com, I would love to hear from you!
Feature image via Victoria Morris