04 May Is Fundraising Scary?
You are Not Alone
If fundraising scares you, you are not alone! Fundraising scares off lots of people who could otherwise raise money for important causes dear to them. Don’t be scared off! Your cause deserves support.
This post will help you be scared on to fundraising: it will help you explore your fears and understand where they may be coming from.
You are also not alone with your fear. You have us: RAISING CLARITY and our community of readers who comment on posts with their own insights about peaceful and ethical money management and fundraising.
Ethical, But Not Peaceful: Are You Scared?
Your fundraising may be ethical, yet still not feel peaceful. There can be several reasons for this, as we noted in this post. One of them is fear.
What we mean is that your fundraising may be perfectly legal, non-manipulative, and for a great cause. This means that it’s ethical, so you “shouldn’t” be scared. (It’s rational to be scared to do unethical fundraising. The solution is to stop, and get good help. If you need help figuring out what to do in a situation you think may be unethical, contact us for a free and confidential scope of work meeting.)
Although your fundraising is ethical, you may still feel so scared you’d rather hide than do it.
Checklist: How Are You Scared?
Fears have an origin; you weren’t born with them. There are three basic kinds of fears around fundraising. Here are three odd questions that help identify which particular fear of fundraising you might have:
- When you want to hide from fundraising, how old do you feel?
- In picturing yourself fundraising, are you watching a horror movie?
- Do you refuse to fundraise, or fantasize about it?
Each of the questions above shows a fear whose origins can be described using a moneycoaching archetype. There are eight money types–three healthy ones and five weak ones. This post brings peace to your fear of fundraising by helping you see its origin in one of the weak archetypes.
Tiny Person’s Terror: The Innocent
One of the weak money archetypes is the Innocent. When you want to hide from fundraising, and you feel very very young, your Innocent is probably crying out for help. It’s the very young part of you that feels much too little to be face-to-face with money (scary enough) and asking grown-ups for it. It doesn’t feel grown up enough to fundraise. Money is for adults, and so is talking about money–which includes fundraising. Therefore the start of a solution is to remind your adult self you know quite a bit about money, how it works, your cause, and why you are fundraising for it.
A Childish Fear: The Victim
When you imagine yourself fundraising, and it looks like a horror movie, chances are good you have a Victim mentality. The Innocent’s terror feels fresh and raw. A Victim expects terror. The expectation of terror is a pattern, a “movie” we replay. A Victim has learned to expect interactions marked by money to be terrifying.
Our money-fearing culture and other fundraisers’ and even donors’ expectations reinforce the pattern. Victims have lots of helpers keeping the scary movie going. As a result, what will help stop the movie is reminding yourself of simple, successful adult things you have done with money that bely the pattern. It is also good to read the writings of adults who are peaceful with money. This is why I try to make sure the RAISING CLARITY blog is a place you can do that, and I know others to recommend.
Teenage Resistance: Refusal to Fundraise
Refusal to fundraise is a fear that pretends it’s fearless. To refuse to fundraise–when it’s our job, when we’ve said we will–takes pretense, which is unlike the Innocent or Victim. It takes actual lying, to ourselves and those we’re responsible to. Lying indicates a buried fear. If you’ve got this happening, and you know it, bravo, because it can be scary even to admit it.
Yet people who have agreed to fundraise and don’t do it often get away with it. Why? Because the people who would call them out are too scared! Again, bravo if you recognize yourself in this, and don’t be afraid to contact us! More may be at stake than your healing. Your healing could help your whole organization’s healing, and ensure its survival.
To explore this level of resistance in yourself (or another person), read about the Martyr, Tyrant or Fool archetype. See which one you are most like and begin to heal. It’s most of all important to start telling the truth–to me, to yourself, even just to your journal initially.
In future Fundraising posts, we’ll explore the three healthy money archetypes and what they offer fears of fundraising. Thank you for reading, and your bravery!