Just ask.

April 26, 2017


Sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it?   If you need something, ask for it.

Sometimes, it IS simple.

“Can I have the salt?”

“Could you hang your coat over there?”

“Would you like to have lunch tomorrow?”

Those are the easy asks.

Some asks are harder:

What’s a lot harder is asking for something that you need.  Asking for help.  Especially if it’s the personal kind of help.  And even harder if you’re asking because you’re sick.

“Can you take me to the doctor’s on Wednesday?”

“Would you be able to pick up a few things for me at the grocery?”

“Can you drive my son to soccer practice on Thursday?”

“Would you mind running a vacuum for me in the living room?”

Those are the harder asks, especially for people who are sick.  But that’s when we need the most help.

Most people who ask if they “can do anything” really mean it.  Oh, sure, there are a handful who don’t. But in general, if someone offers help, they want to do something.  They want to help. So have an answer for them.

Nevertheless, ask

Now, not everyone is going to be able to take a kid to practice. But when you aren’t feeling well, help is important. So scale your ask to the degree of friendship you have.

Direct more time-consuming asks to those with whom you’re close, people who have been there for you through thick and thin. These are the people who should be more than happy to come over and lend a helping hand. They’ll spend the night, cook a meal and do all sorts of things that are more time consuming.

There may be little things that others who ask can do–pick up a prescription or some crackers or come over for a cup of tea.

There’s no time for false pride when we’re sick, no time at all. So when someone says “if you need anything, let me know” take them up on it, maybe even in the moment.  And if they don’t follow through? It speaks volumes about them. Nothing to do with you.

Give a try!

If you’d like some tips on asking when you’re sick or other helpful information and exercises, see my Guided Journal for Healing HERE at my website, A Healing Spirit.  Explore the tabs up top for things that could help you.




90 comments on “Just ask.
  1. Robin rue says:

    You never know until you ask. The worst that can happen is they say no, but a lot of times people say yes. You just have to ask.

  2. I am an only child and was raised to be very independent. So when I got Rheumatoid Arthritis, an autoimmune chronic illness, the hardest adjustment for me was to ask for help. I thought I could do it all and I got a violent shove into reality that I needed help and it was ok to ask for it. My family is incredibly supportive and it always feels good to help others so my asking helped them feel good and helped make life a little easier. Great reminder, thanks for sharing!

  3. This is such a great post. You never know the answer unless you ask the question.

  4. I learned a long time ago that you always have to ask. You also have to be willing to be asked. A giving spirit makes the world go round.

  5. I LOVE this. I am terrible at asking for help, I really struggle to admit that I need a favour, it’s something I really need to work harder at.

  6. I’ve always had a problem asking for what I need, but I’m getting better at it!

  7. pia says:

    The hospital I had my eye surgeries at is about 50 miles away—great surgeon. It was hard for me to ask for help because while I have good friends here they’re not my best ones. I was shocked how eager people were to help me.

    Plus I got so stoned during and after the first surgery from the twilight drugs—they’re still talking about it! And I who won’t eat junk food insisted on a fast food burger and coke afterward. I realized I “proved” my local girl status by asking for help.

    My BFF is coming from Atlanta for my eyelid surgery because I will need more help. As she works two jobs, and is willing to come whenever this does mean a lot.

  8. Tracey says:

    This post is so timely for me. I’m a new mom and also have always been independent. It is so hard for me to ask for help but sometimes it is so necessary.We can’t do it all and its okay to ask for help.

  9. A simple bit of advice that has such compounding significance! Great post. If only people would just ask.

  10. Amber Myers says:

    I admit, asking for help has always been tricky for me. I rarely do it. But I have been asked to do things before, and if I can swing it, I usually will help out!

  11. You won’t know unless you ask! I have always told this to my daughter because it can apply to so much in life

  12. Society in the western world is the only one that honors independence instead of interdependence (extended families, tribes) like most of the rest of the world’s cultures rely on. So it is no wonder we have a hard time asking for help when we have been taught to be self reliant.

  13. Hindsight is always 20/20, right? It’s easy to think about what I could’ve done, but I can never act in the way I want to because I’m frozen in the moment.

  14. Sherry says:

    I am so bad at asking. I think I can do everything myself sick or not, but I can’t. Thanks for posting!

  15. Asking is hard for me. But I have taken mindful steps toward asking for two reasons: it’s just annoying to do things past your capacity and, it feels good for people to know they can rely on you in turn.

  16. jessi says:

    I always say it never hurts to ask. I mean really, the worst you can be told is no! I have tried this in all aspects of my life, from asking companies for free samples to asking my boss for a raise! sometimes it works, others it doesn’t, but it never hurts.

  17. Neha Saini says:

    Well said! You won’t get the answers to your questions, unless you’ll put the questions.But I always get a lie in the answer. So I think not to ask instead of listening lies.

  18. BeTh Havey says:

    Excellent point. Reach out, ask. Then be ready to help in return.

  19. I’m more of a I’d rather do it myself type person, and only in the last year have I learned to ask for help when needed.

  20. Yes yes yes! So often I find out after the fact that someone really could have used help, which I would have happily given, I just didn’t know! People have to ask, there is such a stigma against asking for help. But, there shouldn’t be.

  21. Jay Colby says:

    I learned this lesson a while ago when I was in grade school. Without asking the question you want to ask you will never know the answer.

  22. Ravi says:

    Yes, you need a Promotion..ASK..need a raise..ASK:)!

  23. Selda eigler says:

    Zu Deutsch wechseln
    What an interesting, profound blog. Many questions are asked to ask oneself, some people ask certain people, but some things are taken for themselves.

  24. I really wish my friends and relatives who are sick would ask because I would love to just do it without them asking but I stress over doing something they may not want. It’s all so ridiculous!

  25. I never liked to ask. My parents brought us up to keep things to yourself. But when I got diagnosed I had to ask. My parents, brothers, husband.

    I also am afraid of asking the same great friends over and over again for fear of asking too many times, and people might get tired of listening or helping all the time. I know, I know, if they’re your real friends…..

    But there you have it. I do believe in asking, but it’s not always easy.

  26. Lindsey says:

    I hate asking for help, but honestly if you have support around you, you should not be afraid to ask for help, The last thing you want is to get in a situation where you should not be in.

  27. Marcie W. says:

    I am not one to ask for things unless I truly need a helping hand. I really need to open up and take the plunge more often, but have such a fierce desire to never depend on anyone else.

  28. sharing is most important virtue, it can be your thoughts, feelings or problems. Ask for help and you will get it

  29. It’s definitely hard having to ask for help, especially if you tend to be an “I-got-this” type of person. But sometimes, making the effort to ask is a way of giving, too – people who love you WANT to help you. They WANT to do something, anything. Asking helps them as much as it helps you, sometimes.

  30. Very good point. A lot of times we have preconceived notions and talk ourselves out of asking for help or anything else.

  31. So true, asking is not always somethingsimple. But I absolutely agree: if you don’t ask you don’t know the answear, so is always better to take a”risk”!

  32. KATHY MYERS says:

    I should have asked more often when my kids were younger. I was often times called super mom, not because I liked it but because I needed to make sure everything they needed was taken care of!

  33. Shari Broder says:

    Such simple but sound advice! It’s crazy how afraid people are to ask for help.Great post.

  34. Muna Kenny says:

    The fear of rejection is what I believe is what stops people from asking! I had this problem for a long time and it made life difficult!

  35. Liz Mays says:

    This is a great message. Asking is definitely harder than it sounds sometimes but doing everything alone is difficult too.

  36. Kristina says:

    I like this post! Asking can be easy and it can also be difficult. You are right. – it doesn’t hurt to ask!

  37. karen says:

    You are so right in reminding us to ask for things when we need it. You never know.But – its sometimes hard to do that for some reason.

  38. So very true. This is really hard for those of us who are such givers. I always feel guilty when I need help. But, I am glad when I do, 😉

  39. Chelsea says:

    This is such an amazing post. I have so much trouble asking for help even though I know my family and friends just want to help. Sometimes I just have to force myself to get the words out.

  40. This is a great post. After going through some personal struggles while in school this past year, I found that so many people were truly there for me when I asked. I never would have knew this if I hadn’t have asked.

  41. Pam says:

    It is so important to ask for help whenever you need it. Unfortunately, being vulnerable is scary.

  42. We are big for asking for help. Even though I raised an independent child, she knew that if she had tried all she could herself, there was no harm in asking for help.

  43. Scott says:

    I only ask when I really need something. If we ask for everything we want, you’ll only get a fraction. Pick your battles!

  44. Ali Rost says:

    So random .. but the first thing that popped into my mind was a Fresh Air podcast I listened to recently. A woman who was high up in the Obama administration told the story of working at the White House and there wasn’t a tampon machine. So one day .. after asking around to see who had an extra .. she simply asked if they could have one installed. Low and behold a week later it appeared.

  45. Elizabeth O. says:

    It’s true. Some asks are definitely more difficult to say, but you need it. You need it more than you did when you were simply tired.

  46. Claudia Krusch says:

    It is so important to ask for help when you need it. The worst that can happen is they say No.You never know until you ask.

  47. I have a really hard time asking for help, but i am adement about people asking me for help when they need it. I do really need to start asking when i really need it.

  48. These are really great tips. It is hard to ask for help when you don’t want to be a burden, but when you’re sick you have to put your pride aside. Your friends and family want to be there for you if you just let them.

  49. I get what you mean. I have had such interesting experiences when I have been sick. I had the overly attentive girlfriend who didn’t seem to be able to let me rest with all of her attention. And then I had the ex-wife who had to make sure she was sicker than I was whenever I got sick so she didn’t have to take care of me.

  50. Gracie Gill says:

    It’s true. Asking is a simple action yet is hard to do. Especially for independent people who are used to doing everything by themselves. As for me, it is something I am still learning. Very inspiring post you have here!

  51. You never know an answer until you ask, and you shouldn’t assume. I’ve asked people favours which I deem big deals but people agree without a second thought x

  52. Rosey says:

    I agree, if you need help, ask. A lot of times people won’t say yes, but just as many times they will. People like to help oftentimes, and it can be such a relief if you need it.

  53. Melissa says:

    I find it hard to ask for things from most people but sometimes I need a favor and have no choice. I tend to be ahead in favors so I do not feel bad about asking once in a while. You can usually tell who you can really ask favors from

  54. I love this. I always tell people, just ask! I mean what is the worse they can tell you, NO? Big deal! No is just a word.

  55. Ronnie says:

    So true! I think most people are genuine when they say they’re happy to help. I’ve taken up their offers when necessary and returned the favors always. The bad apples in there won’t do it but then again, who needs that negativity in life?

  56. A good reminder…and we will all be in that position eventually. When my husband had his double lung transplant, I learned the value of asking.

  57. This is some good, but sometimes tricky to do advice. Even though it sounds simple enough, it really can be difficult to ask for help.

  58. Karen Jolly says:

    So right! It’s better to ask even if the question sounds nonsense to you. If you need something to clarify with things, then it’s free to get an answer. This will result peace of mind.

  59. Reesa Lewandowski says:

    I am the worst at asking for anything. I just hate putting people out of their way to help me. But really the truth is, we can’t do it all alone!

  60. Brittany says:

    Asking for help is hard. I have always had a hard time depending on other people. I like to have the control and letting it go is hard.

  61. It is true, asking for help can be the hardest thing to do. I know it is something I struggle with personally as I don’t like feeling like I have to rely on someone! It is true though, it is okay to ask for help x

  62. Jean says:

    It can be difficult asking for help sometimes, and people don’t always realise you need the help until you ask them. We have so many people around us who care for us and would be happy to help so its just having the courage to speak out.

  63. Some of my friends use to say “there’s no shame in asking.” An you know what, they got a lot more done following that rule.

  64. Di Hickman says:

    Asking for help can be so difficult can’t it. Seems like such a simple little thing but if you’re like me you try to juggle everything, be independant, but sometimes we need to admit we’re human!

  65. Annemarie LeBlanc says:

    I can totally relate to this post. It is not only an issue when you’re sick but even in everyday life. My boys won’t do housework unless you ask them to.

  66. Dogvills says:

    I had difficulty with this before, for fear that I would not get the response I hoped for. I also did not want to look helpless and dependent on others so I suffered in silence. It took a while before I mustered enough courage to ask for help when I needed it. Thankfully, my friends and family were more than willing to do so.

  67. Reminds me of the book, “Who moved my cheese?” http://amzn.to/2oC46U3 After reading that as a group, my cousin once asked for a silver tea kettle at a hotel. They gave it to her!

  68. I am just like that too. I’m so exhausted, as of late, that I will definitely let hubby wind down on his own. Keep pushing the limits on this one.

  69. Rosey says:

    SO true asking is very important. If you do not ask you might never know or never know if you could get help. Someone might help you if you ask but will never know if you do not ask. The worse that could happen is a simple no.

  70. Cristina Leau says:

    Even if it’s sounds simple, it’s really hard actually. I have a complicate time time tom get myself in the right position to ask for help, or something I need.

  71. Rosey says:

    I hate asking for help. I’ve made myself entirely too independent. Then when I needed it, and boy did I need it, asking was the woooooooooorst!! I’m getting better about asking…slightly. 😉

  72. Heather says:

    Great reminder that we all need to ask for help sometimes. And we need to make it easy for friends to ask us for help too!

  73. I sometimes struggle to ask for help. I am kind of self-sufficient most of the time. But thanks for the reminder that there is nothing wrong with asking. I need to read through your guide.

  74. Jessica says:

    I have always been given the advice to never be afraid to ask for help. The worse that could happen is someone would say no. I have close friends and family that always tell me to just ask if I need help. I usually always will ask. We definitely need to stop being afraid to ask for help. When I see people helping others, it restores me faith in humanity that there are kind people around always willing to help.

  75. I know this used to be so hard for me—but luckily it’s gotten easier. Now if I could only get my mom to realize….

  76. Robin says:

    This is so true. It applies to the spouse of the sick person as well — I know. Learning to ask for help is a strength, not a weakness. Beautifully written.

  77. Brianne says:

    I related to this so much! I just had to ask a friend for help this week. I never ask and have to do it more often!

  78. Tough one for me! Old instructions, rules, etc.”Don’t ask, keep it to yourself and tend to it yourself, don’t burden others…” So liberating when we can say what we need and want!

  79. lyd says:

    Yes yes yes! I try not to ask too many people for help (it’s a pride thing oops!), but I need to get better at it!

  80. Lee Gaitan says:

    And sometimes the simplest thing can mean so much. I had two friends who were both undergoing chemo at the same time and they lived close to each other. I would load up my car with dinner a couple times a week and go make my deliveries to them. One night, when I wasn’t scheduled to bring dinner, I felt an urging to take throw together some food and take it to my one friend. I arrived at her door, unexpected, and found her in front of the open refrigerator, crying.She had had a really rough go at chemo that day and was going to microwave some leftovers for dinner when she realized she’d already used them up. She almost fell on the floor, so grateful for my inelegant mash-up of food. She was sobbing about being able to handle cancer (for the second time), chemo, and having full custody and care of her young granddaughter, but she just couldn’t face trying to put together a dinner that night.It was nothing to me, but everything to her at the the time.

  81. Good point! Reach out – ask! I seldom ask for help unless I really need to. It’s a good reminder, I need this today.

  82. Sometimes it becomes difficult for us to ask for help even if we need it because of pride or because we are afraid of being rejected. But we won’t know the answer unless we ask.

  83. Stacey W says:

    I am so thankful for such great friends the past couple of years. My husband travels a lot for work and I have two little ones. Last year, we had some medical problems with my daughter an dI started asking for help and support. I was beyond grateful I finally did that.

  84. Raissa says:

    You’re right! Asking those questions makes us owe a gratitude from the person whom we asked for help.

  85. Jennifer says:

    Asking for help, so hard. Sometimes it’s just so much easier to do it myself….even though it’s really not easier.

  86. Angie Rose says:

    This is so true! As a kid, I would ask so many questions, I probably drove my parents up a wall. As we get older, we lose that inhibition to ask those questions. To ask for help or to ask for advice on something. This is such a great reminder to keep asking those important questions.

  87. Krystle Cook says:

    This has been my motto for a little while lately. What’s the worst that someone can say? No. Just ask!

  88. I am so bad about this! I don’t want to ask for help because I don’t want to bother someone, or impose on them. As I grow older, I know that the time will come when I will need to ask for help. Thanks for a thought-provoking post.

  89. Silly Mummy says:

    Good advice that I am not too good at taking!

  90. Yasmin Ali says:

    Such a good reminder! I need to ask more of people because I really don’t. Thanks for sharing!

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