This audio was originally recorded for my audio podcast subscription thingy.
It’s called “Can You Buy Hope” and it starts with a complaint I received by email.
She says: “I have to ask, why are you SELLING sobriety? Why are you selling hope?”
Her comment was in response to a mini-sale I had on Saturday (which was only accessible to a very small segment of my mailing list as a test).
I’m sensitive to this subject of selling, and I’ve written about it before.
So I went ahead and recorded a podcast about hope. Can hope be bought (or sold)? Do all of our accomplishments come from the inside … or does an outside tool help us get stuff done?
I talk about swallowing cement, Tour de France cyclists, being a dry drunk and sobriety itself as a tool.
I’ve posted the entire 15 minute audio here and it’ll be available for 48 hrs.
[ LINK REMOVED ]
click here to try a podcast subscription (1 month trial) – and of course, when you get bored of me, you can cancel whenever you want
Here are some comments from podcast subscribers:
Paulita: “I don’t know if you are selling hope Belle. You’re being a life-line, a listening ear (and you DO listen), a cheerleader, an encourager. That’s all free. The ‘glitter’ (the care packages, the podcasts, the jewellery) is optional and if I want I can treat myself to some of that and other things too (flowers, nice cups, chocolate – whatever I want). I’m learning to be kind to myself through you. I’m badly expressing what i want to say but I don’t think you are peddlin’ hope or selling sobriety. In fact I have MORE money since I ‘met’ you :)”
Rollerskate: “Therapy, personal trainers, coaches, feng shui experts who people pay to literally move their furniture around….all in hope of being happier…better. Just hoping that you’ll get better is of value. People earn money and spend money on things. Would it be better to keep spending money on sabotaging yourself (booze) or to buy a little bracelet [or audio] that empowers you to stay healthy? And your blog is free! Podcasts, okay, trinkets and treats okay. Worth paying for because hey, you’re working to encourage folks and they like and need it. So yay for you! And for your friends and all us supporters :-)”
C: “I get what your emailer is saying. That the experience of hope, or growth, is something we have to accomplish and sustain on our own, so the idea that you are selling it is a bit of a low blow. I think a lot of self help programs prey on this. They diagnose your problem, and sell you the cure … I don’t think hope is what is being sold, exactly, and this is a fine line. I don’t recall having to buy anything to do your 100 day challenge. I chose to sign up for the podacast, etc, but it was not required. So are we talking about selling for actual money, or just the idea that you are speaking from a POV of authority on a subject, i.e. “selling” the idea? Back to the point, I think what is being sold is encouragement and infrastructure. If people derive hope from that, that is their experience. And in my experience it is essential .. we all need help, all the time … But what is the greater good? Who knows… you just turn and ask your heart what is right. If you don’t want the service, don’t buy it. Being a public person, people will build up expectations around what you are doing, so it is good that your intentions and parameters are clear going in. Then people can decide for themselves. I could go on, and think I won’t.”
Clara: “Just listened to podcast #54 and I say keep selling hope. Please. I feel connected to others because of this. This is the only place where someone knows what “day” I’m on, where someone knows i have quit drinking and I am changing. Where it feels like someone gives a damn.”
L: “You don’t just sell hope. You do sell cheerleading and you do it for a price I can afford – we could use more of that in the world. Your time and thoughtfulness is what we’re paying for and your experience; you think about all of us with your packages, podcasts. The fact that you keep adding content that is relevant is really a special talent. Due to the stigma, some of us can’t talk to anyone about our habit for fear of losing our jobs/license if we were to discuss our effort to get healthier and overcome a chronic habit. Rehab is largely inaccessible to the majority of people financially/time wise, and I hate the idea of the AA crap, those are some really bitter bastards in general. I was a numb-aholic too. Many of us in your audience can’t talk to our colleagues, nor our friends or family either b/c of the stigma and the collective acceptance of alcohol and the perception that we don’t have a problem, it is our secret battle. No one else is there for me thru this thing. No one. Belle, this is the perfect tool for those of us quietly trying to get better! And it’s working. It’s like a miracle to me. I can’t thank you enough, you make this affordable and my health and happiness (my old self) is worth more money than I could ever give you. Also, no one is forcing your audience to pay, they can just read the free blog or go do something else.”
What do you think?
[Note: Please be kind and thoughtful. I will gently edit comments that attack; I’m interesting in having a conversation. No shittiness allowed 🙂 can you believe shittiness isn’t in spell check?]