What is one thing you can start doing that will have a profound impact on your life?
Asking for help.
Our society tells us that asking for help is a sign of weakness. A sign that we aren’t capable of doing it on our own. A sign of failure. I look at it as the opposite. It is a sign of vulnerability and gives someone else the opportunity to be a blessing. I recently shared a powerful story of a woman who asked me for help even though it was so super hard to do so (see her story at the end).
I want to contrast that with another woman I have be in touch with over the past couple months. She is an incredible single mom, but desperately needs what I have to offer her. She knows it, and wants to join. Lack of time and finances are two things holding her back. I told her to reach out to her family, friends, social media etc., and share her story. People would be happy to donate $10-$50/month to support her in this cause. I know this because many other clients of mine have done the same.
But for the past few months she has told me that she is too proud to ask for help, and that she will take on three jobs in order to make things happen for her family. While working more is a noble cause and doing what it takes to make it happen is awesome, it saddens me that she wouldn’t at least start by asking for help. Asking for help isn’t bad or wrong, assuming she has added massive value to the lives that she touches on a daily basis. I know this is the case with her. She is an incredible mom, friend, employee etc. She gives and gives and at some point it is OK to ask for something in return.
Side note: I don’t believe it is right to ask for anything without first providing incredible value.
My ego can get in the way many times from asking for help or taking advice, but one area that I have learned to excel in (I have my dad to thank for this one), is asking for directions. Getting lost, or just wasting time in general, is maybe my biggest pet peeve. I will ask for directions even before I get lost, and if I get lost the first thing I am looking for is someone to ask directions. Even when I walk into an unfamiliar grocery store, or Walmart for example I will immediately search for the closest worker and ask where I can find the specific items I am looking for.
I guess that is the same thing you would be doing when you hire a trainer, or join a specific program that has achieved incredible results in people like yourself. You are asking for directions or a blueprint that will save you time, frustration, and money. A shortcut, if you want to call it that. This unfortunately isn’t what most traditional gyms will provide you. They will provide you the nice machines, showers, towels, pools, etc, but let you fend for yourself and many hope you will never show up in the first place. (Supreme Health and Fitness is one definite exception to this). Of course if you have a specific plan that has been proven to work and have the dedication and work ethic to do it on your own then this can be a perfect set up.
Most don’t have the knowledge or the consistent motivation to do it on their own and that is ok. You just have to admit that and put yourself in programs and situations that will give you that accountability and motivation. Asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness, but a confidence in yourself knowing that you have added massive value to the world, and it is ok to expect some help back in return.
I am curious what you think about this? It can be a touchy subject and some might fully agree with my view and others not. Here is the story I mentioned above. Notice the stark difference in attitudes. She “gets it” even though it was SO hard for her to admit she needs help, it is the best thing she can do for herself, her kids, and her husband. I am very proud of her.
“Just last week we sat up in UW’s children’s hospital as our beautiful daughter went through a 3 hour heart procedure. Thankfully she will be fine. As we sat in the waiting area I watched as two families waiting on news of their loved ones. Both families were made up of women, three in one group and four in another. All in their mid 30’s to mid 50’s. Without exception, they were all at least 50lbs over weight, eating cafeteria food and drinking sodas. I wasn’t judging them as people, I was just observing how ironic that here I was sitting in the cardiovascular area of the hospital with women who in all likely hood from what I was witnessing, would at some point in the near future, end up needing some of the very cardiac services that the hospital offered. I don’t want that to be me.
Your email about the personal training came as I acknowledged the fact that if I don’t want to be the person on the receiving end of those hospital services, I need to do something about it now. It always seemed like there would be time later to lose that extra 10lbs. But the truth is that the 10lbs became 15lbs and then is grew to 20lbs and as the pounds grew in number so did my age. Those ladies were mid 30’s – 50’s. I’m mid 40’s and I know that I am no more special than they are. Life is short. I want to have an adventure with my family and meet what life throws our way with energy and confidence. I want to be strong, I want to be fit, I want to enjoy all the things that my body is capable of doing. For those things to happen I need to be willing to be uncomfortable and ask for help.
I have watched as friends have made enormous changes in their lives through the emotional and physical workouts that your classes have given them. I want it to be my turn. No doubt you will have lots of people who want to avail of personal training if you offer it. For once in my life I am going to stand up (or email!), and say that I really want to be considered for it. Just sending this email feels like a risk as it’s all about me, but I have to be willing to take a risk for myself!
Thanks for reading this Dustin!”