A few weeks ago something tragic happened, which in hindsight was not as bad as I perceived it to be at the time. Anyway, at that moment, I was stressed, yelling and frantically calling and texting every single person I knew (the important ones) to alert them of the situation. I was like a drowning person, desperate to catch on to any and everything that could keep me afloat. Internally, I was annoyed at myself for letting it happen and more so having to inconvenience those around me who I felt I was forcing to come rescue me.
It is self-defeating not to ask for the help we need. It keeps us stuck. If we ask long and hard enough, if we direct our request to the right source we’ll get the help we need’Melody Beattie- The Language of Letting Go.
Later on, one of the key actors in helping me sort things out asked me why it is that I push people who are trying to help away. Unknowingly, this led me down a path of reflection where I realised that in the heat of the moment, I tend to act out of emotion; be it fear, shock, embarrassment or failure. I do want help, but I am too ashamed to ask, or even accept it when it comes along. This question helped me remember that I am human at the end of the day, prone to mistakes and in need of help and guidance along the way.
When I think about it, in the midst of my panic, the mindset that getting myself into a fix equates to me getting myself out of it resulted in me actively pushing away those who were willing to help.
Who taught me that? Who taught me that I shouldn’t ask for help in the middle of a crisis? Who taught me that kindness should be extended to others but never to oneself?
Kindness to self has to go beyond buying yourself gifts. It has to encompass acknowledging my humanity and welcoming others in to help me back up when I am knocked off my feet. It has to be me approaching others without feeling like a victim.
As Melody Beattie puts it in her book, The Language of Letting Go:
‘There is a difference between asking someone to rescue us and asking someone in a direct manner for the help that we need from him/her/them. We can be straightforward and let others choose to help us or not. If the answer is no, we can deal with that.’
What are some of the ways, you can ask for help when you need it?