Life: 5 Tips on Asking for Help

It is one of my biggest inner conflicts: how much can I handle, how much do I need to handle, and how much am I willing to handle? The answer to all of those thoughts: a lot. However, I am learning that through the daily grind of life, these things that seem to pile up so quickly do not always have to fall on me myself alone. There are people who are in my corner waiting for me to ask them to take on something new and exciting, like in my job, I have committees to utilize and they would be thrilled to get a new project, which would ultimately take some burden off my plate. Or in school, taking over a group project is sometimes necessary, yet it is also okay to let some other group members take certain portions that are able to enhance the project even more. Asking for help is this wave of relief because all the sudden everything is not falling on your responsibility to complete. The same thing applies to letting those emotional tangles off your chest and making sure that you have an outlet, instead of letting it bubble up and feeling like a firecracker. This is a reality of life, and sometimes it is hard to accept that support. The following is not the final solution to all problems, yet it may be a start:

  1. Recognize when you have too much
    • Knowing when I have too much on my plate is the first step for me to know that I need to seek out some support, whether it is school, work, or an emotional state. I know when I get that weight pushing down on my chest that is the time to take a step back and ask myself, what can I do without and how can I make this a bit easier for myself? I usually start with the little things, calling someone back, writing a thank you note, working out, scheduling an appointment, etc. these are the little things that twirl in the back of my mind that only add to my list of things to do. I can get them done quickly and then that opens up some more space to think about what else needs to be delegated.
  2.  Learn to love delegation
    • As I tell many, use your committees, inner circles, groups, and connections around you to help get things done. Sometimes a project is just too much to handle, and asking for support and a few extra hands can go a long way.
  3. Know that there is no shame in asking for help
    • It is ultimately my decision to ask for help. Some may think it shows some sort of weakness when I cannot handle things on my plate, yet I have found that it proves more honesty and self awareness when you are able to recognize that you do need support. It may be a difficult first step, yet ultimately you are keeping yourself sane and giving someone else the chance to grow within their own learning experiences.
  4. Know your emotional state
    • Emotions can play a large part when you need to ask for help. It becomes more of a personal agenda, rather than a task oriented agenda when you know you need help dealing with the emotional parts of life. Emotional wellness is important, and I see it as something I have ignored in the past. It can be difficult to admit that you feel a certain way, but having a friend, mentor, or even a counselor to help you sort through some of the emotional facts of life can be the best relief you can find.
  5. Help others when needed
    • Help works both ways. You may need it one day, and a friend or colleague may need it the next. Remember how it felt to ask for help in your world and then remind yourself that it may be just as difficult for another too. Helping others is fulfilling for yourself and the community you are contributing to. Asking for help is a great step, and then seeing the impact of a community helping together is another great pleasure of life.
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