There is so much power in asking, yet we often stop ourselves, get in our own way, deny, and dissuade ourselves from what we want. Umm, that doesn’t make any sense. I know I have been guilty of this MANY TIMES. I might need a favor, but before I ask, I mentally talk myself out of it; oh, she has a lot on her plate, I don’t want to put her out, it might make him uncomfortable, etc.
Why do we concern ourselves with what we think others need/want, more than we what we need and want? Often times, we ASK-BLOCK ourselves because we think ‘I don’t want to be too pushy or demanding or rude or pathetic.’ Or somehow we feel like, simply by asking for a favor, we are imposing on that person. So rather than speaking up for what we need, we talk ourselves out of it. The truth is, we are doing a disservice to everyone involved. 1. We are denying ourselves the help/favor/discount/service and we’re denying the other party from voicing their response. We make presumptions about how someone else is going to respond without checking it out first. Not cool!
I think especially as mothers, we feel like we shouldn’t need help from anyone else. And if we do have help (a nanny, a grandparent, etc.), we sometimes feel the need to justify it. Somehow we all absorbed this message, that we should do everything ourselves and do it “perfectly." Luckily, I think that message is getting debunked these days – I hope you all got the memo that “perfection” doesn’t exist and not the goal. Striving for perfection is setting yourself up for failure and disappointment. DON’T DO IT. Instead, consider where you can delegate; where can you get help to make life a bit more smoother, a bit easier, a bit more pleasurable.
I love how this article speaks of parenting as a constant learning curve and the importance of finding the necessary resources to successfully learn. I have had many roles as a mother – I have been a full-time stay at home mom, I have moved 5 times, in 5 years and been the “new mom” in town many times, I have worked part-time, full-time at an office and full-time from home, and I have always needed help and resources. I think moving so often, has forced me to become better at Asking. I have stopped moms in a playground and began chatting about day-cares, sitters, Mom & Me classes, or how they like their Pediatrician. I even quizzed an Apartment manager about the pros and cons of her OB/GYN. One of the things I have observed is that people enjoy helping; they are happy to share their knowledge, resources, and sometimes, literally their hands.
I urge all you mamas out there TO ASK!! Ask for a foot rub, ask for childcare, ask for tele-commuting option, ask for food/wine/chocolate, ask a friend to go out spur of the moment, ask for help around the house, etc. There is power in knowing what you need, seeking it out, and learning along the way what works and helps and what doesn’t. Don't ASK-BLOCK yourself! Go out there today and start being curious and ask for what you need. I bet you will be surprised.