What’s the point of getting help?

I have a rule as a coach that if I bump into a client whilst out, it is up to them how they introduce me. Some are happy to say ‘this is my coach, Jules’ and others prefer to say ‘this is Jules’ and if required to explain how we know each other, they usually say ‘through friends’ or ‘business connection’.

It’s important for them to make that choice as some people do not want others to know that they are working with a coach. This is not personal, as people have questioned me as to…’why would you need a coach?’ ‘What would you need help with?’ ’What’s wrong with you?’

It’s interesting that asking for help is still perceived as a weakness when it is in fact a great strength.

As humans we have spent millennia not sharing what is really going on for us. Hiding our flaws and struggles. And it makes sense. After all you wouldn’t want to show your full hand when playing poker, well not if you were playing to win. And yet for millennia we have also looked to others to support, guide, direct and help us. So what stops us from asking for help?

1. EVERYONE ELSE HAS IT TOGETHER, IT’S JUST ME WHO NEEDS HELP.

Forget how things may look on social media feeds.        

Forget celebrity status or job title.                 

Forget what you have read or heard about them.                                                                                

Not everyone has it together!

When we think that ‘they have it all together’ the end statement becomes ‘and I don’t’ “everyone else is coping…so if I am not, that must mean that I am not good enough or a failure.”

What is closer to the truth is that you are not the only one that may be experiencing overwhelm, fear, stress, upset or confusion. ‘They’ whoever you are comparing yourself to, may or may not have it together, that is unimportant.

What is important is that you recognise where you are and what you need.

Whenever I am doing group work I can almost guarantee that someone will say that their main take away from the session was knowing that they are not alone.

And you are not!

Have a think about what area of your life you would like support with and what would be the right route for you – formal or informal?

Informal – friend, family member, work colleague?

Formal – work colleague, manager, counsellor, mentor, coach? (Not sure about the difference of the last three read this).

Also Hub of Hope is a great free tool to discover what is available in your area if you are looking for other wellbeing support.

Just please remember that you are not alone and ask for help from the right place.

2. I SHOULD BE ABLE TO DO IT MYSELF.

If DIY really was that easy then there wouldn’t be any trades people! There are some bits of DIY you can do and then other times, it’s best to get an expert in.

And this is the same. Whilst you may know you,  after all you have lived with you 24/7 for your whole life, it is great to get an outsiders perspective. Because as Einstein said…

“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”

We miss things. Are blind sided by the thinking minds’ love of status quo and routine. It likes the certainty of knowing that you will behave in a certain way, often doing things that have become so habitual, that you are unaware of them.

So having an outsider help spot them, reflect them and work out different ways forward is helpful.

Think of the amount of great sports people who have coaches and trainers (along with a long list of other advisers such as nutritionists, physiotherapists etc). All these people are able to see the athlete from the outside and look at what needs adjusting. They wouldn’t be able to do what they do without that help!

They know they do not have to ‘know it all’ They give themselves the focus for their bit – the action they need to take – and get the guidance, advise or support from those that can see the bigger picture.

Do what you can yourself and seek the support from outside to help with the bits you can’t. That makes a champion!

3. I CAN’T SHOW THAT I HAVE FLAWS OR MAKE MISTAKES, THAT MAKES ME WEAK.

Working 1:1 with people I am privileged to hear the many viewpoints that there are of life. And surprisingly there are definite themes too;

  • not feeling good enough or not worthy
  • the prevalence of self doubt
  • and that asking for help is like admitting defeat or that it means you have failed.

“to err is human; to forgive, divine.”

Alexander Pope

You may be ‘smarter’ than your parents now, but you couldn’t even feed yourself when you were born. Nor walk, talk or control your bladder. And to learn to do all these things you needed two things.

Firstly to make mistakes;

You had to fall to know about balance.

You had to get wet to learn the signals of how not to.

And you had to stumble on your words to learn how to speak.

All these happened because secondly, you had help.

A guardian, parent or well meaning big person who guided you. Helped you.

So what’s the difference now?

Yes you may be older, wiser and hopefully no longer wet yourself 🙂 but that doesn’t mean to say that you will not make mistakes. I sure as heck do, it’s why I have a coach! As well as various other great people that I can turn to for help, guidance and support.

Just because you have reached a particular age does not mean that you will not make mistakes.

I see life as a computer game, to go up to the next level you will be tested, and often the first few tests you fail. But you also learn. So at some point when that test comes around again you have learnt the lesson and are ready, and without realising it you ‘pass it’ and move up to the next level.

That’s how life seems to me.

When I make mistakes, it’s a great opportunity to learn, to grow. It’s rarely comfortable or easy. But it is possible. And if I can’t see the wood for the trees, that’s when I get help. To get clarity, learn and grow.

So have you got it?

Or do I need to beat the drum even louder…IT’S NORMAL TO GET HELP. It’s normal to have support. If you need more or different support during these unusual times then go get it.

Check what wellbeing support your company has in place because so many of them do.

Be clear with friends or family as to what help you can give and what help you need.

And if you need professional help, check that you are getting the right form for you (use the previous mentioned links)

One of the biggest defects in life is the inability to ask for help.

Robert Kiyosaki

AND if you would like to explore coaching as the support that you need and specifically working with me, then please do email jules@juleswyman.com to arrange a coaching call. I would be honoured to share part of your life’s journey.