I love helping others. It makes me feel good. You probably feel the same way – most people like to help others. But I kinda suck at asking for it.
I think there are many reasons I don’t ask:
- I’m afraid they’ll say no.
- They will think I’m stupid.
- They will think I’m weak.
Interestingly, all of these excuses are utter bullshit and I’ll explain why.
I’m afraid they’ll say no.
This could totally happen and so what if it does? What’s the worst thing that can happen if they say no? You may feel crappy for a bit, but it’s not the end of the world. Ask them if they can recommend someone else or simply ask someone else.
They will think I’m stupid.
If you ask for help, you are not stupid. In fact you’re the opposite of stupid; you are smart. Asking for help means you’re smart enough to know that you can’t do xyz without some outside assistance. Take my website for example. I want rebrand and update it. I have enough technical skills that I can blunder my way through, but I am not an experienced web designer. I need a helping hand. So I asked for it.
They will think I’m weak.
When you really think about it, this statement is just dumb. When you recognize that you need help and then actually ask for it, you’re being vulnerable. It takes a lot of courage to show your vulnerability. So in reality, it takes courage to ask for help. You’re not weak, you’re courageous.
One other thing – and this one is super important. If you don’t ask for help because you think you’ll be seen as stupid or weak, it likely means you unconsciously (or consciously…) feel that way about the people that ask you for help. Let that sink in for a minute.
“Until we can receive with an open heart, we’re never really giving with an open heart. When we attach judgment to receiving help, we knowingly or unknowingly attach judgment to giving help.”― Brené Brown, The Gifts of Imperfection
Asking for help requires you to be vulnerable and courageous and it means you’re smart enough to know when you need it.
When’s the last time you asked for help?