I am a big fan of accepting you don’t have to do it all (remember to hand in your superhero cape). I also know how hard it is for so many women to either let themselves off the hook or ask for help to get through the more challenging patches.
What holds us back from asking?
not wanting to appear to be failing or less than others – It seems like everyone else is managing fine so we put pressure on ourselves to suck it up and get things done. Since so few people are willing to talk about what they need to let go of or need help with this image of others can also be a false image.
Try to let go of comparisons, but at the very least know you might be comparing yourself to an inaccurate picture.
fear of being vulnerable to another person – we worry how we will seem, worry about putting ourself out there and not getting the support we need, worry about letting someone else into our imperfect world.
It’s okay to not always be 100% strong or in control, holding it all together on your own. Let others help patch up the cracks when they appear.
high standards that only you can meet exactly – whether it is your mother -in -law offering to watch your kids or your husband trying to do more housework it can be hard to let them help in their own way. Does it matter if your mother-in -law lets the kids skip one nap a month or feeds them junk for lunch? Does it matter if your husband can’t sort and fold the laundry “properly”?
Let go of the need to control how help is delivered and focus on the bigger picture. What is your goal – more free time, less stress, the ability to take up an opportunity for yourself?
not wanting to be a burden on others or imposing on them – Many of us are aware of how much everyone else is dealing with too and we don’t want to add to their loads. We assume our requests will be too much for someone else.
Allow others to be helpful and know this can be a positive thing for all. The helper might then feel able to ask you or others for help too (kind of like putting money in the bank and they can draw on it later) and they feel useful and like they have a purpose in service to others.
Everyone can gain from asking for help
Admitting openly that we need help takes the pressure off others – when everyone is stoic and a martyr, pushing themselves and pretending it is always under control, we leave no room for anyone to admit they need help. Once one person admits it the knock on effect can be great. Women seem to find freedom once they realize we all need help time to time. Often there is a feeling of solidarity like we are all in this together, we buoy each other up and offer our strength when can and draw on the support of others when we need it too. By being open and vulnerable we can create a wonderful two way street of support.
It is okay not to be perfect, not have it all together all the time, need support, say no when you need to, leave something undone or for someday. Instead of trying to juggle all the balls yourself it is okay to pass some of those balls to others.
Do you find it hard to ask for help? How do you feel when others turn to you for support or to help them out?
Find your simple,
Linking up with Jess and the gang for IBOT – head over and check out the awesome posts being linked up this week.
Image credit: help wanted by flickr user bgottsab