In highschool there was a beautiful girl who I didn’t know well who always seemed to be the star of the show.
I felt she was cocky,
and I resented her for the ease with which she seemed to travel through life.
I got better grades than her,
and worked my ass off at all times. She seemed to swan through life without a great deal of effort. Everyone loved her, especially teachers.
She had no problem asking for what she wanted. Others would go above and beyond to help her out.
I never asked for help with anything,
and would go to long, laborious lengths to ensure I never relied on others nor asked for favours.
I felt that the more independent I was, the less of a burden I’d be, and that therefore I’d be liked more. I did this in my friendships and my romantic relationships.
Somehow I’d equated asking for favours with being a burden.
In relationships, I felt that the worst crime for a woman was to ever appear needy, or vulnerable, or to ask my partner for too much help or support.
Brené Brown sure had some advice for me!
I could NOT understand why —
when I was such an independent, unneedy chick — that guys weren’t flocking to me.
Yet this chick, she asked for what she needed from people frequently and got it, and people loved her.
I hated her.
I felt she was entitled and selfish.
Looking back I realise she had learnt early what took me another decade and a half to learn – that asking for favours and receiving help and support makes you a better, more likeable person, not worse.
As I wrote in a recent blog post (What to do if you feel guilty when people do nice things for you), asking for help makes you more connected, strengthens your relationships, and makes others more likely to feel safe asking you for help in return.
If you need a favour or support from someone in your life, for the love of Yoda, ask for it!
You might even find you make a better friend in the process.