Asking for help often makes people feel uneasy because it requires surrendering control to someone else. If you fear asking for help during your times of need, find out why it can feel so challenging to ask for support, and how to get better at it.

In a society where doing everything yourself has become the norm, it seems like fewer and fewer people still dare to ask someone else for help. Many people feel embarrassed or reluctant to let others know they are unable to do something, no matter how big or small the task may be.

From a logistical standpoint, outsourcing various tasks such as finding someone to do your grocery shopping, or hiring a caterer for your family holiday party, or organizing travel plans can be difficult and time-consuming tasks to complete.

Especially during times of Covid – many are working from home, forced to balance child care and work all in one place. Sometimes, you just need the help. 

However this is not always an easy task, even outside of a pandemic. Maybe, this could be the perfect time to foster the skill. But first, let’s understand why people fear outsourcing their work-related or personal tasks to a professional and how to get better at it.

Why it’s tough to ask for help

Think back to the last time you felt a tsunami wave of stress hit you like a brick wall. Did you take the time to eat that day? Maybe you scheduled too many tasks to complete in an unrealistic amount of time. We’ve all been there.

No matter how ambitious, or independent you may feel – the stress of feeling overwhelmed is enough to drive the worst out of you, and here’s why.

You fear giving up control

Asking for help often makes people feel uneasy because it requires surrendering control to someone else. When in reality, asking for support shows another person that you trust them and in turn, grows stronger bonds and relationships.

Paying for support

It’s often that entrepreneurs feel the need to do everything themselves rather than pay to outsource their tasks. The importance of paying to outsource simple, yet time-consuming tasks is hard to understand when money is always the focus of attention. In reality, once they have done the math on how much their time is worth, the cost of outsourcing turns out to be quite economical.

Feeling like a failure

That damned word: failure. Asking for help often makes people feel weak or incompetent, trickling down to all areas of their life: a failure in the workplace, a failure in a marriage, and a failure to your family and friends.

When you have to say “help me please”, many people feel as though it means “I can’t do this, even though I should be able to”. Where in fact, outsourcing tasks to someone else is actually a sign of strength, not weakness. Not only is it an investment in streamlining your schedule but it is also a testament to a healthy mind, showing you are aware and present of your current capabilities. It’s a good thing. 

How to start asking for help?

Taking opportunities to ask for help in smaller ways can make a huge difference over time. For example why not start asking for help with the smaller tasks like organizing your child’s birthday party, or picking up the dry-cleaning, or having a package of important documents delivered to an address. It saves you time, and when your time is worth money, it saves you money as well. 

Recognize and be mindful of your limitations. Asking for help is not a weakness. Rather, it shows a sense of self-awareness that is highly admired by all who look up to you. 

And as a reminder…

To the ambitious entrepreneur: your time is worth more than your money. So don’t be afraid to outsource some simple tasks to gain more time.

To the nurturing woman: caregiving begins with oneself. Asking for help is your biggest leap towards self-care. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

And to the feared employee: delegating tasks to a professional will boost your work performance. Don’t fear being looked at as a failure; instead, create safer spaces for people to ask for help.