The whole and its parts

The whole & its parts

Asking for help

A skill worthwhile learning is the one to ask for help.

And it’s less evident than it may seem at first sight.

For leaders, the task becomes to figure out in what situation the other is to then become able to figure out what problem the other person needs to solve.

For some, the main hurdle is the willingness and humbleness to ask for help. Among the many reasons why they might not do it, are the sense that it’s not appropriate, that others will not want to help, or that one has to be able to do it on one’s own. Whatever belief is in the way to asking for help, it can divert one’s attention from asking to the reason why one can’t.

Sometimes it’s as simple as not knowing that there is help available for this specific situation. That is the situation that someone may be uncomfortable with what he or she does but might not be aware of alternatives. Once one is settled on suffering and carrying the load of a specific approach people will not even think that asking for help is an option. It’s often a question about expectations towards self that the person has where others will not have the same expectations.

Another reason for not asking is that it can be challenging to develop the question to ask. That is often in situations in which there is a sense that help is needed while the problem has not yet been fully understood. When people learn a new skill or step into a new field or experience, they have not yet learned enough about this matter to be able to ask a specific question. Thus, if they even think about asking for help, their question will often be so vast that it is almost impossible to answer it.

Once it becomes clear what type of help the other person needs, there is still the possibility to decide if it is help that one wants to provide or if it is help that one has to provide. In other situations, being tolerant and leaving things as they are might be an answer. Whenever the person understands that they need help but don’t ask for it, the help they need most certainly isn’t the answer to their need, it is to learn to ask for help by themselves. However, this will only work, if one has done the work needed to create circumstances in which asking for help is possible.




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