I’m not a fan of asking for help. Yes, I know you probably knew that about me because I’m all strong and take-charge and do-it-all-myself and then help some other people along the way. It’s my thing…my bag…part of my identity.
I’ve been helping people since as far back as I can remember and when I feel like I’m in the weeds (to rock out with some server-speak from my old waitressing days) it freaks me out because I’m afraid to ask for help and seem weak. I know, you and I both hear that asking for help is a strong act and only strong people with strength ask for help.
I don’t know about you but when I hear people say that I snort and make that laughing noise that you make when you want to call bull***t on someone saying the sky is green.
That being said, I’ve spent most of my marriage learning how to ask for help. It’s part of the compromise that I have made within my marriage and it’s taken a long time to get to a point where asking him for help doesn’t make me feel like a huge failure. He’s not to blame for my feelings – when I ask for help he’s right there supporting and helping me. Over the years it’s gotten easier, but there’s still a little voice in my head that laughs at me in a nasty tone when I reach out and say, “Please help.”
It’s so much easier in a professional setting. You can ask the management above you for help, you can delegate to the people who are on your team for help. Those don’t seem weak to me because they are part of a pre-determined and time-tested organizational structure I’m comfortable with. I like teamwork and asking for help in those situations.
I wonder what makes that so different from asking for help in my personal life from my nearest and dearest loved one. I think it is going to require a lot more thought on my part and maybe even a little bit of soul searching.