I am not sure where the notion came from that small business owners and entrepreneurs can afford to work for free. They take a huge risk working for themselves, often times without any financial or mental support. It is amazing to me how family and "friends" will automatically expect handouts, discounts and free services and products. The same people that assume they are entitled to special treatment are the same ones that don't believe in the entrepreneurs dreams, the same ones that don't support the business, the same ones that don't offer any mental support or any business advise...the same ones slaving away working for someone else receiving their guaranteed pay check from their employer.
These same people that request a discount or assume they are entitled to one, I just wonder how they would react to their employer asking them to work just a few extra hours for no additional pay OR let them try you out and SEE if they feel you are worth receiving compensation. I am not speaking of an internship either, you know what you are in for up front. People really have the nerve to ask, expect or want small business owners/entrepreneurs to work for free or discounted rates, but if the same was asked of them they would have a mild heart attack!
If the small business owner/entrepreneur was doing something illegal or went against a persons morals or values, I could understand not wanting to support it, but when the business is legit, positive and helps that person make a living for themselves and their family...why is that so hard to support??? If you can not afford the person's services or products, but you believe in what they are doing or support what they are doing, refer them. Support is not just financial. Don't make assumptions of what your circles can afford, put out the information and keep it moving. I have a hard time understanding how people can make decisions for others, yet again, these same people making decisions for others would be upset if people were making decisions for them.
As difficult as it may be...DON'T GIVE UP! Keep going, keep working hard, keep grinding, keep charging your worth...Everyone is NOT your client, everyone is not going to be your cheerleader, everyone is not going to believe in your dream, but you can not stop. You never know when your breakthrough is going to come. From one entrepreneur to the next....I'M ROOTING FOR YOU TO SUCCEED!