Our desire to do everything on our own can get in the way, but asking for help benefits both ourselves and those helping us.
Do you notice that you find it hard to ask for help when you have a problem? Have you had some difficulty lately but you still don’t dare to ask for help from other people? This approach drags out problems for a longer time, and many times we’re not able to solve those problems definitively.
Why is it difficult to ask for help?
Most of the time, the reason we haven’t asked anyone for help is our pride or vanity.
We believe that we can do everything on our own, that we’ll be able to get ahead without having to show our weaknesses to other people. Perhaps we took a crash course in self-help and learned that we have to boost our self-esteem, but we went overboard.
Each of us has talents and great value, but we’re not omnipotent. (New Age philosophy lies to us by telling us that the power of our mind is infinite, which is clearly not true.)
We are not invincible
The reality of our life is that each of us has good qualities and strengths that we can and should cultivate and enhance. But it’s also true that we aren’t invincible. We face difficulties and we don’t always have all the tools we need to overcome them.
For this reason, it doesn’t make sense to think that we’ll always be able to solve our problems on our own. We must leave fierce independence aside and recognize that we won’t be able to reach our goals in life without the help of others.
Relying on others helps us to reach our goals on both the physical and supernatural levels. Being ready to ask for help is always useful, in everyday circumstances, such as getting a jar off a shelf that we can’t reach in the supermarket. as well as in the interior life: “No one is saved alone,” says Pope Francis, speaking about fraternity among people in order to be happy on earth and to reach heaven.
We don’t like others to see our weaknesses
Another danger is not asking for help because we don’t want others to know our weakness. “If they find out that this is happening to me, they’re not going to respect me as much,” we think. We prefer to remain on our imaginary pedestal rather than talk about our problem and ask for help.
What would we say about someone who’s suffering from pneumonia but refuses to go to the doctor? We’d recognize that he’s foolish, wouldn’t we? He’s missing the opportunity to get well and live a better life.
Well, that’s what happens in our lives when we find it difficult to ask for help because we’re weighed down by “what people will say.” Vanity ruins thousands of opportunities to get help.
So, how can we ask for help?
Asking for help is much easier than we imagine. Let’s reduce it to four simple steps:
- Tell someone what’s wrong. Express what your problem is and what you think you need to solve it.
- Be straightforward and honest. You don’t need to justify yourself or invent a lie so that people will help while avoiding the appearance that they’re doing a favor. It’s better to acknowledge that what we’re asking for is help, plain and simple. There’s no shame in that.
- Trust other people. Don’t make assumptions about whether they’ll help you or not. Trust that they will, and you’ll see how many good surprises you’ll get. Remember that giving to others is one of the natural goals of human nature, so when we ask for a favor we’re putting into action the most human of humanity. We’re asking for an act of love, expressed in the other person’s generosity.
- Be grateful. Whatever the other person’s response, say “thank you.” That person has given you the opportunity to step outside yourself, to be humble and sincere, and to open up to other people. It’s something you learn by practicing.