I have always felt a great deal of resistance around asking for help. This became quite apparent to me this week as it was lovingly brought to my attention by a coworker.
My reasons for resistance are complex, interconnected, and mostly subconscious. I strive for independence, I like to challenge myself, and I prefer to be a helper rather than a beneficiary. But at the same time, I yearn to be vulnerable, to trust, and to learn from others.
In a letter to Anais Nin, Henry Miller wrote, “by receiving from others, by letting them help you, you really aid them to become bigger, more generous, more magnanimous. You do them a service.” By accepting help from others, we can both benefit. When we reject or do not intentionally seek the support and help of others, we are passively, albeit unintentionally, shutting them out of our lives.
This past week I also began my first coaching relationship (I am the coachee). I was approached by the coach; it was not something that I pursued on my own. I naturally feel open to the process of self-discovery and transformation so I was excited about this possibility. Yet, when the coach started to dig a bit deeper, I felt threatened. I felt as though I needed to maintain the illusion of having it all together and being successful. This is one of the greatest ongoing failures in which I continually submerge myself.
I never hesitate to help others; yet, I do not seek help for myself and sometimes resist or reject help when it is offered to me. I am going to continue to be aware of how I feel in response to accepting loving help and support from others, and push myself to open up to the generous gifts of their minds and hearts. My goal will be to appreciate what others have to share and to balance what I give with what I receive.