One of the hardest things to do is ask for help. Not everyone has this challenge, but for those who do, you know what I mean. You would rather struggle for hours to do something than spend a minute to ask someone to stop what they are doing and help you. However, when you do, you see that not only do they not mind helping you, but you have saved yourself hours of frustration. In addition, your allowing them the chance to help is a blessing to them.
Sometimes it is pride that gets in our way. Often times though, it is more that we do not want to burden others with our challenges. Sometimes it is not so much what we have to do specifically, but how much we have to do overall. Between a career, children, family and home responsibilities, car maintenance, lawn maintenance and so on, it is easy to see how we all struggle to manage everything. We run around stressed out always trying to improve our efficiency and fit more “to dos” into less time, but the struggle never seems to end. The list is never done.
What is the answer? I hate to admit it, but it is asking for help. Whether it is from our kids, our spouses, our friends, or professional support, sometimes we (I) need to humble ourselves, let go of our feelings of guilt, let go of the fear of being judged by others, burdening others and worst of all, the ugliness of self-judgment and accept help and utilize help wherever it makes sense for us personally, regardless of whether or not it would make sense for someone else. No comparisons. Just acceptance.
It is irrelevant if the career mom down the street seems to be able to manage it all. We are only in competition with ourselves because we are the only one like us. What makes sense for me may not for you. For example, when my husband was alive, he was deployed a lot. It got to the point where we realized it was more affordable to pay a service to do our lawncare and work in our jobs for that amount of time, or spend quality time together, than to do it ourselves. Our time was precious. More than we knew.
For about a year now, I have had a cleaning service come clean my home once per month. For a mom, especially one who is not working full-time, that can come with monumental feelings of self-judgment, concern for others’ judgments, and guilt. Yet in reality, this has been a great resource and choice for me. It has allowed me more quality time with my kids, time to work in other areas, self-care and so on. Can I clean my house? Yes. Does having an extra couple pairs of hands for a few hours one day a month make me less of a mom? No.
The professional help allows me to spend my “cleaning time” organizing, keeping up with laundry, and doing other things that I am much more efficient at than dusting the house and exponentially improves my ability to keep up with my daily cleaning the rest of the days of the month. Does this choice mean I need to make a little bit more money at work to offset the cost? Yes, but I would much rather spend my time doing what I love than saving the money by doing myself that which I don’t.
If you will allow me, I would like to release you from any feelings of guilt or judgment you may have about asking for, accepting, receiving, or paying for help in any way that makes sense for you. You know you best. Make your life as happy and stress-free as possible by whatever means necessary. In this DIY day in age, it is easy to take on everything, but let us not forget, trades exist for a reason. Sometimes it is okay to let the experts handle something and spend our time honing our own expertise, whatever it may be.
With heaps of help,