So, the Leadership course that I’m (super enthusiastically) working my way through sets us tasks and inquiries – to support the learnings we had while we were all together. And this weeks inquiry is to do with our relationship with asking for help.
Any in all honesty, my relationship here sucks.
So, the task to undertake was to try and find at least five opportunities to ask for help where you might not normally, and see what happens.
So… this is where the challenge starts… but I’m going to claim an early win here, from the return leg of our vacation.
Help me to fly
Ok, so that’s a bit of a stretch but…
We had a great Golden Week holiday in Bali. And I’m a fan of direct flights where possible… but the reality of 01:30 kicked in loud and clear at about 20:00 on the night of the flight, and suddenly our allocated seats at the busy front end of economy (to hit the Immigration Hall as swiftly as possible) were not looking so charming – with three tired, grouchy and borderline unwell kids.
I have a tendency to assume there is little point trying to sweet talk airline staff, and so normally would have just ‘made do’ with what we had allocated… but… why not? Why not just ask…? Is the back of the plane quieter? Could you move us so that we could hopefully be able to spread out a bit and find a way for the kids to lay out and sleep a bit on the way home?
One cute toddler smile (littlest is still super useful being cute at this point in her life)… and yes… moved to the back of the plane where our 5 seats managed to spread into 7, and then 9, during the flight. One tiddler sleeping on a blanket in the floor in front of me (well, she’s still pretty small), middlest and eldest bundled out across 2 seats each… and hubby managed to see off a Chinese contender for three middle seats and a couple of hours kip in between some email clearing.
Yet again, it appears that if you’re able to ask (politely, and without assuming you are owed anything) sometimes the universe comes through for you…
So, what else do I need help with?
My course taught me (very clearly!) not to be overly specific in my demands for help, rather to simply ask and see what might happen when people have the opportunity to help in the way they want – rather than the way I would typically prescribe so…
I’ve decided to lay out my current wishlist – to see what the universe comes back with.
Parenting 101 Help
I’m trying to raise 3 small children, whilst living abroad in a wonderfully amusing yet challenging city, a long way from my small but well honed support network – and I’m finding it hard. Eldest is a ‘spirited, independent, strong-willed’ chip off the old block (b*gger – it’s sometimes like looking in a damned mirror!), eldest and middlest fight like cat and dogs, and littlest, whilst still super cute, has decided it’s time for her to find her voice in the family… But I don’t need any more voices to try and listen to. I can barely hear my own… Can I have some help here please?
Add to this a desire to still keep a marriage / partnership in tact – rather than just feeling like co-minders of a small zoo. I think you can sense the personal struggles here…
Friendship 3.0 / 4.0 / 5.0 Help
I keep moving. I keep heading off around the world, and my nearest and dearest have done so well at holding the fort for so long for me that the scorecard is weighted heavily in their favour. How can I keep my longest and most important friendships alive across the miles and years (3.0), whilst truly allowing myself to open up enough to make some real friendships out here (4.0) – without the fear that everyone is essentially just at some part of the ‘moving on’ phase of ex-pat life?
And then how do I successfully manage the amazing new global network of friends (5.0) that I have made through my studies and adventures? I struggle with enough hours in a day, let alone managing the time zone game…
Portfolio Career Help
I’m a solid Gen X, not Millenial.
I’m not a digital native and yet I want to find a way to utilise the new ‘social’ networks to showcase myself as a brand – with multiple, linked, well developed and seriously studied strands of talent and interest.
How can I best serve a company that I still love, whilst also developing myself to be the best leader and coach that I possibly can be? So that my wider aim of inciting positive change, and inspiring real action to support true working ‘equality’ can be met?
And does this one not really boil down to – how can I show up as the best leader I can be?
Answers on a postcard please… Oops sorry, showing my age there. Add a comment. Email me. Facebook me a thought…
I’ve decided that all offers of help will be welcome – however they show up.