Asking for help isn’t easy…

Help or support, advice and knowledge – that’s all helpful.  But when you ask and you don’t get quite what you need, it puts you off!

You can or maybe do ask family initially, then friends, and maybe colleagues not only for work related problems and then turn to a professional.    Question mark figure by Master isolated images

I was in a this week and unable to decide what sort of support I needed but I knew I needed some clarity, some focus and encouragement.

However, sometimes your family don’t want to change things as you fit into their agenda, or they don’t want to feel responsible if things don’t work out having offered advice; and maybe you are their anchor and life develops for them around you.  Shift that and lots of lives might be shifted too.  And change means discomfort both practically and emotionally, and psychologically.

Similarly friends, although more likely to help as they can empathise with you and know you quite well (sometimes better than you) and maybe they have an agenda but not as tightly as family links, as friendship is a choice.    But will they do things just to make you feel better rather than real honesty which is sometimes required for you to get back on track or see your path more clearly, not clouded by emotional responses alone?

All I survey from the safety of my home!Sometimes when life is overwhelming us, space and time can be helpful.  make that time and find that space to think, to be, to worry or to make decisions.    To come to terms with the issues you’re facing, to check out where you are and where you want to be (and maybe where you’ve come from).

We worry about who to ask for that help and support but obstacles might be:

  • When you fear being judged* …(*see below)

We all do, and especially by those who know us

Maybe it’s because we judge ourselves, harshly and demandingly, to points sometimes we can never actually meet!   Standards remain (too) high, and we can’t let go either because we have no idea how or that we cannot recognise the standards are changeable to suit our own needs!

  • When you feel you’ve failed …and are being judged

Again, maybe we project our own judgement of our self onto others who are likely to judge us the same.

  • When you don’t know what to ask for…

Where to turn – who, how to find out what you need, where it will take you and do you have time to waste experimenting?   But sometimes choices are neither right not wrong, but if they are wrong we are afraid to take the risks.

  • When you know you are making a risky choice that others generally won’t support or agree with – but you want it anyway!

This is one I’ve known, and others must feel the same.   Sometimes our instinct may well ‘know best’ (the universe provides, opportunities arise, do you have or can you develop what you need?

Blue & Yellow speech

So how do you know “Who can help me if I don’t know what I need?”

“What am I really looking for and how do I find out?”

We can’t ask about what we don’t know about …like the maths problems at school many people refer back to in adulthood.  I know I do!  If I could have done then my answer would have been “Because I thought I DID know how to do it!”  (‘If the student isn’t learning, then the teacher isn’t teaching’).

The first step –  deciding who is it the right choice…

  • Choosing from ideas you already know of
  • Research on the internet, talk to people, Facebook
  • Ask others who might have been in a similar situation
  • Ask networkers who meet lots of professionals who could maybe help

NetworkingMake contact …

Maybe ring up and speak to a few professionals, friends or relatives and see what response you get.   Supportive or not, it reduces the options!

Once you decide on the type of help you want….

Decide on who will be the specific one(s) you turn to, having weighed up the pro’s and con’s.

The first step is the hardest and maybe the relief is too immense or more than we realised!  But it feels good to be heard, accepted and understood.

*Sometimes, the distance of a professional can help as with counselling and coaching.  My clients never have to remember the process and pain, or see me again, or even acknowledge me if they do.  That’s part of the package and the point of choosing professional support.

Once you are accepted – even if they agree or not – makes it so much easier to manage!   A problem shared is a problem halved almost instantly!.   We feel justified, right to be doubtful, right in our choices and right to have doubts too.   It’s OK not to have all the answers!

Wisdom Stuart Miles

**Why do we fear being judged? 

Judgements are just what we naturally do in any given situation, especially new ones – it’s our defence mechanism for survival; not just life, physical survival but emotional and psychological too – maybe this is the main problem we fear damage to our emotional and psychological selves.   Can we fix it if it gets damaged?  How will we know if it gets damaged – can we understand it like the ‘expert’ doctors, psychologist/psychiatrist, counsellor or coach, mentor etc.