I don’t know if it’s an Irish thing or just a general human thing but I’ve noticed that one of the most difficult things us Entrepreneurs seem to struggle with is asking for help.
Asking for help and reaching out can actually be the best possible thing you can do. No one likes to feel like they are being a burden or annoying someone but what makes you think you are being a burden? Did anyone actually say that? For example, say a colleague of yours comes in and burst into tears. What do you do? You sit them down, get them a cuppa and ask is there anything you can do to make them feel better yes? So why can’t others do the same for you?
What we think asking for help means:
I’m a failure, I can’t cope on my own.
I shouldn’t have to ask for help am grand dealing with this myself.
I’m weak somehow
Other people will look down upon me if I ask for help.
If I ask for help it means that I might have to do something about the situation – FEAR of taking action and making the decision.
Are these valid reasons not to ask for help? During this journey of mine (Life, entrepreneurship etc) I have learned that one of the most important things I have done has been to ask for help when I needed it.
Also, I’ve learned that If I worry too much about what people think, I won’t get very far!!
Why it’s OK To ask for help:
1. You might be helping someone else out by asking – The person you call or reach out to might be having a bad day themselves and be wondering what is it all about? The fact that you have asked them to help you means you value them and respect their opinions and admire them. This makes the person feel useful and a valuable member of the community. So you have probably just made their day by reaching out!
2. The burden is shared….you feel you are not alone.
3. They will most likely identify with what you are going through and have already found a solution to that particular issue so they will be able to share how they overcame it.. It will make them realize how far THEY have actually come.
4. When you reach out you are actually showing that you are human and will gain respect from the person who you reach out to. They will remember you and keep an eye out for opportunities as you are on their radar.
5. The problem you are having might actually be something that can be dealt with easily in some way you don’t know about, but the person you reach out to might have a solution for you e.g. it could be just something as simple as introducing to you the correct person. Or letting you know about a new grant that is available. They might even be able to help you fill in the forms.
All of the above has happened to me when I reached out to another leader or Entrepreneur and said ‘You know what, I’m really struggling here, am having a really bad day’.
Sometimes just a cup of tea and a chat is all it takes. So don’t let pride or worry stand in your way. Reach out, ask for help and learn …..I am learning every day. If I didn’t reach out to others I wouldn’t know half the stuff I know now!