The struggle with seeking help: unraveling the mystery behind why it’s so difficult
Kelly Banks is the Co-founder of Support Crew, along with her good buddy Janine Williams.
Kelly explores overcoming the struggle of seeking help – unraveling the psychology behind it and discovering the strength in vulnerability.
Life can be a rollercoaster ride, filled with highs and lows, but navigating it alone can sometimes feel like an uphill battle particularly when you’re dealing with a major life event like cancer or the loss of a loved one. We all face challenges, and at times, we need a helping hand to guide us through the storm. Yet, the simple act of asking for help can be incredibly daunting. Have you ever wondered why seeking help feels so difficult?
In this article, we’ll embark on a journey to explore the psychology behind this struggle and provide tips to overcome this reluctance. So, maybe the next time you need help, it might just be that little bit easier.
The vulnerability conundrum
One of the key reasons asking for help is difficult lies in the realm of vulnerability. When we ask for help, we’re exposing our insecurities and admitting that we can’t manage everything on our own. Society often fosters an unrealistic expectation of self-sufficiency, which makes asking for assistance seem like a sign of weakness. However, it’s essential to remember that seeking help takes a significant amount of courage and strength, not weakness.
Breaking the stigma
Beyond vulnerability, the stigma surrounding asking for help also plays a substantial role. Seeking assistance is often associated with failure or inadequacy, leading us to suffer in silence. However, it’s crucial to dismantle this stigma and recognise that we all need support from time to time, and even more so when we’re going through a tough time like cancer or the loss of a loved one. Just like we readily offer help to others when they need it, it’s okay to accept help when we need it. We all know the amazing feeling we get when we help others. So don’t forget that you give that gift back to others when you let them help.
Fear of burdening others
Another common reason for avoiding care-seeking is the fear of burdening others with our problems or the perceived inconvenience of helping us out. We often worry that sharing our struggles will be seen as an inconvenience, leading to strained relationships. However, genuine connections are built on mutual support, and reaching out can strengthen bonds rather than weaken them and potentially allows us to spend time with friends and family when we ordinarily wouldn’t like sitting in a car with them as they take you to an appointment.
The power of empathy
Empathy, both from ourselves and others, plays a significant role in the struggle to seek help. We often berate ourselves for needing support, considering our problems insignificant compared to others’ – particularly if others are going through a tough time as well. However, acknowledging our emotions and treating ourselves with compassion is essential. Additionally, offering empathy to those who reach out for help fosters a supportive environment, encouraging others to come forward without hesitation.
Making it easier to ask for help
Asking for help is undoubtedly a challenging task, fraught with vulnerability, stigma, and fear. However, it’s crucial to recognise that it takes courage to seek support and that doing so can lead to tremendous personal growth and strengthened relationships. The journey towards seeking help may not be easy, but it is an essential step towards self-discovery and emotional well-being and also making sure you get the right help at the right time when you’re dealing with something big.
How Support Crew can help
With Support Crew, we hope we’ve made it easy for you to ask for the help you need by creating an online help roster to help you ask for help without actually feeling like you’re asking for it, and to help you think about the types of things you might need a hand with that you might not have thought of. All you need to do is set-up a Support Page, invite friends and family, make requests for help with anything from meals to cleaning to transport. Then share updates with how you’re doing. And if you’re supporting someone doing it tough, why not set-up and manage a Support Page for them?
So, if you or someone you know is struggling to ask for help, remember that support is just a click away. Start a free Support Page today and discover the power of genuine connection.
Additionally, if you’re looking to support someone dealing with cancer, check out these valuable 5 tips to be the pillar of strength they need. Additional organisations like Cancer Society of New Zealand offer valuable resources and assistance during challenging times and for a practical guidance on managing finances after a serious illness diagnosis, check out Sorted’s guide.
Remember, asking for help is a sign of strength, not weakness, and together, we can create a world where seeking support is embraced with open arms.