Why is it so difficult to ask for help? Well, you have to admit that you don’t know something (and in our perfectionist world everybody is supposed to know everything) and asking for help doesn’t just involve yourself but also the time and effort of somebody else.
I was never the girl in school or university to ask the teacher a question when I didn’t understand something. I felt relieved, when someone in the class asked my exact question and I therefore didn’t have to ask for help.
When I started working part-time or had internships, I had to start asking more questions. How should I do this? Where is a folder in the office? How do you want me do to this task?
My boss at my last part-time job would say: “Julia, do this task.”
Me: “Ok, how should I do it? How should it look like in the end?”
He: “Just do as you please.”
So I did as I please. After a couple hours I present my boss the finished tasks and he hates it. On top of that, he is mad at me for wasting so much time.
So I say: “But you said that I should do this the way I want to!”
This led to the problem that my boss would get mad if I asked him questions but would also get mad if I didn’t read his mind and didn’t do the task how he wanted. It was hell. I couldn’t satisfy him no matter what and I am so happy to never work there again. I learned that no matter how much money I can earn, I will never work with such people again!
Whenever I have to ask my classmates or teachers for help in uni, I feel like I am bothering and annoying them. I worry that they could hate me for my questions.
But you know what? They can say so if that is true. As long as nobody says “Could you please stop asking” or “Ask somebody else”, why do I worry that I annoy somebody? Why do waste my energy worrying? If I have a question, I will ask it. If that person doesn’t want to answer, he will say so and I will stop. That’s how easy it is.
I always try to help people and it makes me happy to answer their questions. That is why I shouldn’t expect other people to hate helping me but rather expect them to feel happy helping me.
In the end, I don’t care if this person hates me for asking for help, because I don’t even want to be friends with somebody who hates helping others.
So I rather ask all the questions I have instead of worrying about possible (or impossible) consequences.
And as for my ex-boss situation, it is a lost case.
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