Asking for Help: Why It’s Important & Tips for Asking
If you ask my family who should be giving advice on how to ask for help, I’m sure the last person they would think of is me. Everyone who knows me will tell you that asking for help is certainly NOT one of my strengths as an individual. I go out of my way to convince myself (and everyone else) that, “I can get along just fine on my own, thank you very much!” This is precisely why I believe I’m in a unique position to offer advice on this very topic. I know just how difficult asking for help can be.
Why is it important to ask for help?
Beyond the obvious fact that you “need” it, why is asking for help important when you have psoriatic arthritis? For one, asking for help allows me to conserve some of those precious few spoons needed to get through my days, especially if I am going through a flare. Developing that ability to ask for help with a chore or difficult task keeps me from burning through all of my energy a third of the way through the day. In addition, asking for emotional help makes me feel less alone. It also helps me to learn new ways of coping with the emotional hurdles.
Asking for help doesn’t mean you are a failure
It is more like admitting that you are human. We don’t live a solitary existence. Whether you need a little emotional help for dealing with the anxiety or depression common to psoriatic arthritis, or a little physical help on a particularly painful day, seeking support from those around you (online or in person) is part of being human.
You are not alone
There is a whole community of people here waiting to listen and offer their help and support. Need to know about a new medicine your doctor suggested? Just ask. Need to know if others experience the same painful tendons? Just ask. Need advice about talking to your family about psoriatic arthritis? Just ask. Need a good vent, to rant and rave about how hard it is to live with psoriatic arthritis? You are not alone.
Finding help with no loved ones nearby
I know, not everyone is blessed with people in their life willing to help with some of the physical demands of living with psoriatic arthritis. Not everyone lives with someone willing to change their schedules or overhaul their life to offer the necessary support. That is okay. There are ways around that too, even if you have to save a little money or get creative to pay for the help. Decide what is most important, or what you need the MOST help with, and find a company that provides that service. Does the clutter overwhelm you? Find a service that comes in helps with daily maintenance. Is your body unable to deep clean your bathroom or kitchen? Do you find lawn care exhaustive?
Use what you have to get the help you need
If you look around, you will be able to find quality help, for any budget. Also, don’t forget about talents and skills you ARE able to offer – barter your talents for the help you need. Money isn’t the only acceptable currency in the world. Offer your own services in exchange for the help you need. Psoriatic arthritis may cause a great deal of aches and pains, it may even make it impossible to work a traditional job, but we will always have something to offer in exchange for the help we need to make our lives a little easier.
Tips for asking for help with psoriatic arthritis
- Be specific– Simply asking for “help” doesn’t give those willing to offer it any direction for what you need. Being specific in what they can do to will make it easier and more likely that someone will be willing to help.
- Be grateful– A simple “thank you” can go a long way. Be gracious and grateful for any help offered, even if it wasn’t “exactly” what you had imagined or “exactly” how you would have done it yourself.
- Be reasonable– Don’t expect someone to turn their lives upside down. Don’t ask the impossible from those you love. Be reasonable in your expectations, accept the help as it is offered.