It’s OK to Ask for Help
I like to think of myself as a strong, independent woman. There are many things I am capable of doing and I take pride in being able to come up with an idea and turn it into something real. The internet has made it very easy to answer any questions I may have about home renovations, cooking, healthy living, having good relationships, and building a business, to name a few. No one needs to know that I have questions, limitations, and maybe even some doubt once in awhile.
I’m not sure when it became so difficult to ask for help, but I have to say that it has been one of the hardest things for me to do. We certainly live in a time when we have access to so many resources that make it possible for us to take on basically any challenge. The DIY Network make it seem reasonable to completely transform your weed-invested backyard into a tropical oasis over the course of a week-end. Ready-made meals that you simply pop in the oven create an assumption that it’s no big deal to get everyone in the family fed. You can purchase all sorts of fitness equipment on The Shopping Channel so you can work out easily in the comfort of your own home. Writers of self-help books profess that if you simple follow a few basic steps, you will be completely fulfilled. If you practice meditation and have no expectations, all the guidance you need will come my way.
The underlying message is that you can do it all, without any kind of help. Independence is respected and expected.
Well, today I asked for help and I survived. I have been struggling for a while to find answers to some of my business questions. I have searched many internet sites but wasn’t able to quite get the answers that I was looking for from articles. I have considered talking to mentor for a while; someone who has walked this path before me and has first hand knowledge of some of the detours, obstacles, and highlights. But I was fearful of asking. Perhaps the person I asked wouldn’t want to help. Maybe they wouldn’t have the answers I needed. Maybe they would judge me for not being able to sort things out myself. Well, of course this was just self-doubt and thankfully I was able to break through it. I contacted a wonderful woman, Patt Osborne, adventure coach, who has been doing her things for about 10 years. She not only answered my questions, she listened to my ideas. Instead of feeling discouraged at the end of the conversation because I felt I had to ask for help, I felt a sense of relief and freedom that I didn’t have to keep searching. I felt validated and affirmed that I was on the right track, doing lots of things right, and that people truly do want to help each other.
I think my main lesson is that asking for help is a sign of strength, rather than a sign of weakness. None of us can be good at everything. Imagine how each of us would progress in our personal development if we asked for help with the things we struggle with, in turn freeing us up to put energy into the things we are skilled at and have a passion for.