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I’m noticing a lot at the moment how difficult many of us find it to ask for help, and I wonder why that is.
Some of us have a fear that it will make us look weak or as if we are failing in some way. Some of us don’t like to be a worry or a burden to others and feel that if we ask for help that’s what we’ll become. Some of us believe that we won’t get help even if we ask for it, so there’s no point in asking. And some of us see those round us juggling their already busy lives and feel that we can’t possibly impose. Whatever the reason, many of us either don’t or won’t ask for help – sometimes until it’s too late.
I’m as guilty as anyone else – I had to really pluck up some courage the other day to ask my accountant for help with my book-keeping, and I felt ashamed of myself for having let things get to the stage where I needed help. Of course, she couldn’t have been lovelier when I told her what the situation was and once I’d put the phone down I was left wondering what I’d been scared of.
And then I thought about how I feel when someone asks me for help, and I realised that I never see anyone as weak or a failure if they do – I actually believe that it can take a great deal of guts to ask for help, and that we should be congratulating people for doing so.
So next time you need some help but don’t like to ask for it, try to work out what’s holding you back. If it’s a fear of being seen to be weak, ask yourself whether anyone will really think that of you.
If it’s worry about being a nuisance well, when was the last time you asked for help? Trust me, if this is your worry then I can guarantee that you’re NOT a nuisance because you won’t have been asking for help very often before!
If you think you won’t get help even if you ask for it, try to work out where that belief comes from. If it’s based on past experiences with certain people there are 2 things to bear in mind. One is that, just because some people may have been unhelpful in the past it doesn’t mean they’ll be unhelpful this time; the other is that if you ask someone else for help, their reaction is likely to be different.
And if you think everyone else is too busy so you shouldn’t ask for help well – how do you know if you don’t ask? It’s up to them to decide that, surely?
Don’t forget, there are lots of people out there who love and care for you and WANT to help you – so don’t be shy of them!