Because it’s a sign of weakness.
Plus, I’m perfectly capable of handling everything myself. I don’t need anyone’s help for anything.
Those are the lies I told myself and the belief system I worked from, day in and day out for as long as I can remember.
I thought I was being strong, independent and capable. I was wrong.
My foundations about asking for help
I don’t know how I developed this false belief that asking for help was wrong. Maybe my parents ingrained it into me, or perhaps a childhood experience caused me to think that I shouldn’t ask. Whatever the reason, I’ve never been one to ask anyone for help.
But honestly, living like that is exhausting. It meant that I had to do everything on my own and that I had to have all the answers. The reality is I’m a physically limited human being who doesn’t know it all.
It took awhile for me to internalize this truth, yet I finally did when I was out of strength and choices. But I didn’t go easily.
The wrong way to ask for help
Once I recognized my shortcoming, I started to be more open about asking for help from others. However, I didn’t go about it properly:
- I would ask, but apologize for being bothersome.
- I would ask, but feel guilty for taking up other people’s precious time.
- I would ask, but beat myself up for not being able to do it myself.
- I would ask, but rather than let others truly help me, I continued to do as much as I could myself
- I would ask, but feel indebted to that person rather than accepting their gift of help
While I thought I was making progress, I wasn’t really. I was “pretending” to ask for help so I would look better in front of people, to let them believe I was humble enough to understand my weaknesses and not try and operate in them.
But then something happens that causes you to have a true need that only someone else can fill. One that you are helpless to do anything about. That’s when you realize you have to let go and give yourself permission to ask for help.
Giving yourself permission to ask for help
Although it’s not always easy, there are times in our lives when we simply have to ask for help.
Because the truth is:
- we can’t do it all
- we don’t know it all
- we are wise when we allow others to use their gifts and talents to help us
- we weren’t created to live life in isolation, apart from the help of others
These truths are what sets us free – free to cease striving, free to seek out the generosity of others, free to live the way we were meant to. And when we truly operate from these truths and give ourselves permission to ask for help we find that:
- others want to help us
- we can accomplish more when we accept others’ help than we can alone
- we aren’t weak but wise because we know our limits and honor them
- we can bless others by allowing them to use their strengths to help us
- being open to asking for help encourages others to do the same
It’s been a long, hard journey for me but I’m finally over the hump. I have given myself the freedom and the permission to ask others for help. In return, I have learned the beauty of receiving help and the difference it has made in my life.
**Download your Permission Slip to Ask for Help here
It can make a difference in your life too. If you’re willing to give yourself permission.
Are you willing to ask others for help? Why or why not?
What changes do you need to make to give yourself permission to ask for help?