In the last 48 hours, have you said “aah”? I hope you have. Think of a cool drink on a hot day. Even my 14 month old grand-daughter knows that “aah ” means happiness, relief, pleasure, and comfort. Do you know what “a-a-h” stands for? I didn’t know either, until it came to me just a few days ago. It stands for (and I’ll stick by this forever) “ask for and accept help.” Of course!
What brings happiness, relief, pleasure, and comfort better than asking for and accepting help? Not much!
Why are so many people reluctant to do so? Here in Texas, probably all over America, there is a widespread ethos of rugged self-reliance, which holds that an honorable person takes full responsibility for himself, endures stoically the consequences of his own decisions, and views asking for help as weakness or failure.
I certainly agree that it is desirable that everyone dig deeply into themselves for courage, perseverance, effort, and skill to move their life forward, and contribute to society rather than drain it of resources. At the same time, we know that life often hands people extraordinary challenges that quickly overwhelm our normal coping resources. Is it good for society for that person to crash and burn? Is it honorable to let unfortunate circumstances grind us down from strained to crushed? I don’t think so.
Regardless of a general ethos of rugged self-reliance, there are circumstances in which good judgment requires asking for and accepting help. That is, the rules change! To adhere to the usual rule when the rules should change is stubborn, unwise, selfish, and self-destructive. This truth is widely represented in adages such as, “If
you want to go fast, go alone, but if you want to go far, go together,” "It takes a village,” or “
There, but for the grace of G-d, go I.”
When you get a toothache, do you do your own dental work, or visit a dentist? When you or a loved one is suffering acute or prolonged emotional upset, do you Google it, or consult a psychologist? To reach “a-a-h!,” remember to ask for and accept help.
“My passion is ensuring that every adult is mentally ready to succeed in all transitions that comprise the adult years. The meaning in my life comes from helping my patients see themselves, their situation, their future, and the entire world with new eyes and a newly courageous attitude.
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