Tag Archives: brene brown

Asking for Help

This is not something I generally admit to, but it seems like all of the books I’ve been reading lately have been saying, “Ask for the goddamn help.” I hate asking for help. But, seems like I need to ask for help to learn how to ask for help? 🤔

Right now I’m in the middle of Brené Brown’s The Gifts of Imperfection. I just thought it was time to read one of her books. I’ve seen her TED talk, read articles by and about her. I’m pretty bad about reading book descriptions (which is how I ended up buying a romance novel with my daughter’s name as the heroine. ickety ick ick) so I just figured it would be good advice for how to deal with my own perfectionism.

Well well, what a nice surprise for me. This damn book is all about asking for help and knowing that you’re an imperfect person and asking for help is a perfectly reasonable, human thing to do. That asking for help is part of what makes us human.

And I’ve read Amanda Palmer’s The Art of AskingThat was helpful too. I’ve been doing all this self-help reading lately. Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In. That Deep Work book I mentioned the other day. All of them are pushing me towards realizing I can’t do it all myself. I definitely need help to get into that mental space, both to create and then to hone. Sure I can write some wacky romance novel, but unless I have space and the energy to revise and clean it up, it won’t be anything worth reading.

My quest for this month is to ask for help. And, perhaps more importantly, feel like I deserve to be helped. That I’m important enough to help. That I’m not just a bother. I feel like I’ve been disappointed so many times before by asking for help that I’m only setting myself up for even more disappointment. But, it’s a new month. And it’s a new thing to learn. And accept, perhaps.

This feels terribly squidgy to leave up on the internet. But. I can’t be the only one who feels like this. I can’t be the only one who can’t and won’t ask for help. So here it goes.

How do you ask for help? And how do you get over this initial ohmygodican’tpossiblyaskanyoneforanything hurdle?

On Vulnerability

My friend in my writing group was asking for blog topics the other day and I said, “how about on being brave?”

He wrote a great blog post I totally needed because he’s reading one of my pieces now. (An aside, Bryan Young is crazy talented and you should read his books. Seriously, go do it. Here. Let me help you)

I’m not so sure my main issue is bravery now that I’m thinking about it. I tend to the prickly side. I like to put on my makeup face, wear my armor, and look unapproachable. I skew hedgehog. My spikes? Look how fucking rad they are! But my little pink belly? Fat chance.

It’s vulnerability that scares the bejesus out of me. And that’s the hard part. And it’s been an underlying reason I’ve been hesitant to revise. Because when I revise, I’m one step closer to actually showing people my work. And then they’re one step closer to seeing my novels are poorly executed weird ideas. My jerkbrain tells me this enough already. I don’t need it externally as well.

It’s been a while since I’ve watched this, but it’s good to post:

Friends who love you and tell you how much they love your stuff are important. But so are friends who post 38 comments on your google doc, then message you with, “So, I finished the first chapter. Tell me what you think. Do they help?”

It’s hard and it’s scary, but, it’s a first step. That first step might be a doozy, but I think I survived it.