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Need help? Ask for it!

Monday, October 29, 2012

"Asking for help does not mean that we are weak or incompetent. It usually indicates an advanced level of honesty and intelligence." — Anne Wilson Schaef, 1990

I am sure you have heard and witnessed the cliché that most men do not like asking for directions or asking for help on many things at all. It is equally true that many women don’t like asking for help and especially when it involves the caretaking role of others. So does asking for help imply that we are weak? Does it suggest that we somehow are not able to care for ourselves or others that we care about? Do these questions in the purest sense sound silly? They should! Pride, ego and guilt get in the way. These emotions take hold and prevent us from seeing and seeking the assistance we need in order to help ourselves and others. Take the airline example of the stewardess/steward reminding us “in the event that oxygen is released and you have children (or elderly) you should put the mask on yourself first. This makes perfect sense, right? You cannot help others if you do not help yourself first. If you pass out for lack of oxygen, they don’t make it either! You both lose! So why is it that we have so much trouble with helping ourselves in situations?

Of course, we all believe that we should be capable of handling most anything that comes our way regardless if it appears to be trivial or difficult. Most would agree that this is true, but what happens when we reach a place where life is a struggle and we push ourselves to the point of breaking? We bite our lip and push even harder. The problem with this lies in the fact that as human beings, our bodies and minds cannot handle ALL that is presented to us ALL the time! There is a threshold level that is different for each person which culminates at that tipping point of losing our patience and energy as well as our minds and ability to think properly. This kind of stress is hard on the body, mind, and spirit. It saps us of the very thing we need the most and we rarely re-generate enough to bring our stores back up to a manageable level; much less a level at which we can operate optimally. We are not good at recognizing or asking for help when we need it. Most people cannot even tell you when they are “stressed” unless it is a major disastrous event. At that moment, it hits us very hard on the head almost knocking us out. We then tend to react instead of respond which puts us in a vicious cycle of self-abuse. It is a hard cycle to break, but it can be done!

The first step of breaking this cycle is taking care of yourself; making time for YOU and asking for help then you need it. If you have taken on too much then honest recognition is the next step; seeing the signs and symptoms within ourselves when they first appear on the scene. For many it could be any of the following: heart racing, creeping and tight shoulders up to the ears, nasty headache, mind racing, disjointed or destructive thoughts, impatience, and irritability. Unchecked and uncorrected, these develop into shortness of breath, migraines, anger, frustration, lashing out, and sometimes violence. Inwardly, the stress hormones wreak havoc on our organs by releasing too much of them into our system. Parts of our brain and organs shut down and physiological responses such as heart attack or stroke can happen. Over time, these can develop into chronic and debilitating conditions.

Change your mind about asking for help NOW! Everyone needs help from time to time. We all need it when life is throwing us too many curve balls and we cannot keep up. The final step is asking for help when you know you need it. It is having the confidence to say to yourself that it is “ok” and “good” to admit you can’t do it alone. You know in your heart that in the short and long run, it will be better for everyone involved to accept the support to help you do a great job. There is also a prevailing but unspoken belief that the emotional side of things is not as important as the physical side. Matters of the heart can feel devastating, but do they also have physiological effects as well? The answer is YES! In this regard, it seems it is even harder to reach out for that aid. Just remember that emotional trauma, especially involving relationships, can have a huge impact on our lives in many ways and it is vital to keep this healthy!

Many clients come to Master Matchmakers stating that they feel they are not doing something right because they are attracting the wrong people. It takes courage, honesty, and intelligence to realize this and to actually do something about it! By coming to this point in their lives, they are recognizing that asking for help is a good thing. Actually, it is a great thing! For example, if you have watched or participated in sports, you have noticed that individuals and teams need a coach! The coach guides, leads, supports, and teaches; providing the keys to continual improvement. It is an accepted and common practice; one that is never questioned. Therefore, participating in the coaching process is the extra special part of getting help because it allows for personal growth; for moving forward to meet that special someone to share life’s experiences. It could be the most valuable thing you ever do for yourself!

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About Us

Joann Ward has over 30 years of experience in the dating service industry. Along with her son, CEO Steve Ward they became internationally known as the Hosts and Executive Producers of VH1 Tough Love

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To assist our clients in finding, forming and maintaining the ideal relationship we offer professional dating and relationship coaching as a complement to or substitute for matchmaking. You will meet your coach face-to-face to identify patterns, break habits, learn best practices and plan ahead.


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