I don’t know where it came from, but for my entire adult life I have felt uncomfortable with the idea of help or support.
Whether big or small, I’d feel like I had to accomplish things by myself. My personal mantra was, “I got it!”
Until I realized, “I don’t got it.”
I had been throwing on my superwoman cape not out of necessity, but out of fear. Does any of this sound familiar?
Fear that if I slowed down and asked for help, that I might be rejected. That people might not come to my aid the same way I would come to theirs.
Fear that they would not do it the way that I have learned “the thing” needs to be done and then I’d be even further behind to do it over again.
Fear that they would half-ass it because they can’t possibly care as much as I do.
Fear that they do a great job and then I still feel bad because I don’t have the skill to do it as well as they do.
And on and on…..
These are valid fears, but it shouldn’t have stopped me (or stop you!) from reaching out for help.
Needing someone to watch your kids, or help you around the house or support you as you grow your career — these aren’t signs of weakness. It’s a necessity, particularly in this society.
Needing someone to walk through life with you — whether it’s a partner, a nanny, an employee, a good friend — is not a flaw. It’s not something you should apologize for. As my friend Alex once told me, “It’s perfectly okay to try to make life easier for yourself.” And sometimes, making life easier for yourself means calling in reinforcements so you don’t have to carry your stress alone.
So here’s your homework: Take a moment to make an informal list of all the people who you admire. This could be people who you know in real life or celebrities. Ask yourself, “Do they do everything solo or do they have help?”
I’m guessing you already know that answer. So what makes you any different?
If you still have trouble asking for help, let’s solve this once and for all.
It can be helpful to sit down and think about why you are hung up on asking for help (which will allow you to tackle that issue so you can request assistance with ease), but another tactic is to simply get in the habit of asking for help.
Skip all the whys and hows and “I’m uncomfortable” and just…do it.
Grab your phone right now and text someone asking for help. Start small.
What is one thing that you have been struggling with lately? How could someone else coming in alleviate that stress? Identify one person who could help and reach out to them. Today.