Help Is Not A 4-Letter Word
Nothing to See Here
I’m good. I got this. Don’t worry about it. It’s ok. No, thank you.
How many times had I uttered these phrases when someone offered to help me? Whether it was helping me put a bag in an overhead bin, carrying groceries, working on a project, you name it. The response was always the same.
And the internal response: I don’t need your help. I can do this on my own. I’m a strong, capable woman.
I’m also a stubborn moron.
Ask and Ye Shall Receive
When I was younger, so much younger than today I never needed anybody's help in any way But now these days are gone, I'm not so self assured Now I find I've changed my mind and opened up the doors
I recently saw the film “Yesterday”, which is about a man who is the only one to recall The Beatles. This song not only sums up how he feels as he pretends to pawn off songs that aren’t his, it resonated so much with me, reminding me that asking for help is not something shameful.
Help is love. Help is caring. Help is success. I could go on and on about how it takes a village, teamwork makes the dream work, yada, yada, yada. And yet, in all my years of business, why didn’t I ask for help? Why did I think I needed to do everything on my own?
The truth is I was spoiled. When I decided to start my own business, work came to me from former co-workers and people they referred me to. I didn’t need help. I was golden, sitting back and watching the work roll in. Now, that’s not to say I also didn’t go out there and connect with people, but I never directly asked anyone to help. I was marketing. I was selling. I was doing this on my own.
And yes, I was listening to business podcasts, reading books and learning, so I was, in essence, helping myself. I just wasn’t asking anyone for help directly.
Um, About That Lifeboat
But then something changed. Work slowed down. And while I was learning all these great business tools, I was also overwhelmed with where to start. Which marketing tools were right for me? What was my goal? The truth is I needed help. I needed a strong team of people around me. I needed people who knew things I didn’t know and who could apply that knowledge directly to my unique situation.
So, I hired a business coach. I joined a networking group. I started telling everyone I knew that I was looking for clients and explained what I did so they could keep their ears open. I asked openly and unabashedly for help. Because I realized I couldn’t, and shouldn’t, do it on my own. In fact, I pitched this concept of asking for help to my coach as a topic for her podcast. Apparently, she thought it was a good idea, too. Take a listen.
I have skills, but I also have weaknesses. I have things that need to get done, that I don’t want to do — or rather — people more qualified than me can do them. So I outsourced. I freed up my time to do what I’m good at, and let other experts around me do what they do best.
And things started clicking. I’m only mad I didn’t start sooner. Because my time is valuable. Why was I wasting it on things that someone else could do for me?
It's Your Turn
So the question becomes, what are you doing that someone else should be helping you with?
What’s taking up your time because you don’t want to ask for help and think you need to do it all yourself?
What would happen to your business if you hired/outsourced/subcontracted one person, or more than one, to take things off your plate, so you can focus on what you do best?
Can you imagine the potential?
Can you imagine how much more time you’d have for yourself?
Can you imagine where your business could be in 6 months? 1 year?