As I’m creating podcasts, I regularly reflect on and collect thoughts and ideas that I hope will be of value to you.
Recently, I was asking myself the question of what is one idea that when I came across it, it really changed the way I go about my life and as a consequence I’m much better off for it.
There are quite a few Ideas that came to mind but there is this one that just kept calling out to be shared with you today. It comes from two different people who were mentoring me at different times.
The thought that led me to remembering what these two mentors said comes from the movie “Into the wild”. The protagonist in that story spends the majority of the film longing for solitude until he finds himself in a tragic circumstance about to die all alone in the wilderness. He then has the devastating realization that happiness is only real when shared.
So, what the first mentor said to me when I was dealing with a particular problem was: “André, you need to learn to ask for help.”
At that time this was something that I found difficult. It practically never occurred to me that asking people for help was an option. I always took my difficulties on by myself and at that moment I couldn’t really take this advice in and accept this person’s help.
However, these words kept ringing in my ears during the following weeks and months and eventually I learned to ask for help more often and quicker.
And that has been such a gift. Because, not only did it make the load I was carrying lighter, it also has infinitely enriched my life.
Asking for help not only leads to receiving the support you may need, but it also helps build relationships.
It gives others a chance to be part of your life. Even if it is just for a moment.
Asking others for help is a beneficial thing to do for everyone involved.
For example, it puts someone else in the position to be able to give, to make a difference and support someone. It helps you having a shared experience with the person or people you ask for help.
Which brings me to what the second person said: “If you haven’t solved this challenge yet, it’s because you haven’t involved enough people yet.”
That same person went on and said ”You can't have a great plan all by yourself."
Recognise that it is people who often have the keys to open doors for us which would remained locked if we were all by ourselves.
Following that thought means YOU might be the one that has the key to unlock a door for someone else!
Once you start involving people in your life by asking for help, or by involving them in your projects and plans, a beautiful synergy starts to enfold.
My experience is that if you learn how to ask for help in a skilful way and you surround yourself with, and involve people, who uplift you and who tend to think bigger than you and who help you expand your thinking, magic and Grace starts to flow into your life .
When you receive help you’ve got a great opportunity to give back in whatever form and this dance of giving and receiving begins to take place.
It will fill your life with gratitude. And as gratitude and grace are two sides of the same coin, Grace starts to flow more and more into your life.
As a changemaker, you may have a vision of what change you want to bring about. As people tend to support what they help create when you involve them in shaping that vision, they are more likely to stay dedicated to your dream and more often than not your dream may become bigger, bolder, and more powerful. It will therefore also be more likely to succeed than what you would have been able to come up with by yourself.
So ask yourself the question: when I need help, do I ask for it?
There once was a young boy who was walking with his dad through a forest.
It was a beautifully sunny day in fall with the forest having a golden glow covering the warm colours of the leaves about the fall from the trees.
They were both thoroughly enjoying the walk and each other’s company when they came a cross a large branch that had come off a tree and was now blocking the forest path they were on.
The boy turned to his father with a spark of adventure in his eyes and said, "Dad! what do you think? You think I can lift that branch?"
And the father said, "yes, I think so! But, you have to use all your strength."
So the boy ran up to the branch and tries his best to lift the branch. No matter how much effort he made or what he tried, he wasn’t able to lift or move it.
"Dad! I’m not able to do it."
"Well, I said you have to use all your strength."
So the boy tried again. He did what he could to lift it, closing his eyes, clenching his teeth and with all his might going for it.
Still, he wasn’t able to lift it.
"Dad! It’s not working!"
"I’m trying my best but I’m not able to move it."
The father looks into the eyes of his son and says: "Son, you never asked me, to help you. I said use all your strength."
This story indicates to me that we haven’t accessed our full strength unless we have thought about who can we ask for help.
This is how we bring out the best in both ourselves and others and how we can conquer all the challenges of life.
It takes a lot of energy to exclude people, yet very little energy to include people into your life.
"Anything worth doing is worth sharing and you won't find anything more beautiful on this world than people."
Learn to remember to hang out with people who lift your life up. People who inspire you. People who uplift you.
Go and spend time with them.
And, whenever you need it, dare to ask for help.