Dashing from appointment to appointment, toddler in tow, mind racing with all the things that need to be done before school pick up and dinner isn’t even in the equation. Making business calls with your foot against the office door so the kids don’t come barging in mid-sentence, realising you forgot to shave your legs this morning but you’re wearing a skirt, sending out invoices way too late! Does it sound familiar?
Yesterday I dropped in to see a friend to pick something up. She asked if I’d like to stay for a cuppa. My initial instinct was to say “No, I have too much to do” but a voice came out saying yes. I’m not sure who it was, but apparently it came from my mouth.
Sitting down at her table and chatting about everything and nothing for half an hour rejuvenated me yesterday. It’s so easy to run the race of life at a million miles an hour and forget to take 30 minutes to sit and smell the roses – or the coffee in this case!
When I was about to leave and pack Mr3 into the car to race off to the next errand, she asked if he’d like to stay. I’m not good at asking for help and I’m not good at accepting it. Knowing I could dash to the next port of call without bundling my little man in and out of the car on a hot day was so appealing…
I said yes. Thank you. He stayed and I was able to race off and quickly get an errand out of the way and accept some help.
It had me thinking, why do we find it so hard to ask for help? I know I’m not alone in this, and I also know I am more than happy to help friends when they reach out. So why do we soldier on until we simply can;t walk under the weight of it all?
In my case, it’s partly to do with my upbringing. I’m from a family of martyrs. We’ve been told our whole life we shouldn’t be a burden on anyone. That word burden grates on my nerves and I can’t really get my head around how people can be a burden to those who love them. However, I guess it’s a bit like Pavlov’s dogs; I’ve heard so often throughout my 35 years that you have to do it all for yourself and it’s wrong to ask for help so I’m finally conditioned to that way of thinking.
Well yesterday I began to change. I can’t do it all. I do need my friends and I welcome their support. It will take time, but I’m going to start asking for, and accepting help.
I challenge you to ask for help this week. Accept a helping hand from a friend or loved one and see how much easier it makes your life, and also the joy your ‘helper’ gets from being able to lead a hand. Do it.