Most women often lead a hectic lifestyle, where we tend to do everything ourselves. With the use of our intuition, we can anticipate who needs what and when. We use our extreme capacity for generosity and offer to help others by using our time allocated to self-care or other significant commitments. When you add our jobs, the commute, home and social life to the mix, the weight of our actions become a frantic pile of self-depletion. This is a bad habit. Most of the time we could ask for help, but we refrain from it fearing rejection, disappointment or shame.
I call these tendencies of over helping and not asking for assistance, the Superwoman Syndrome. We do have superpowers that benefit humanity, but the Superwoman Syndrome is a condition in which women’s mindset default to saving the world (their world) while sacrificing themselves in the process.
Think of a time when you thought you were stronger than others and therefore could do it all. I must admit, I have many times. This syndrome comes from a place of trying to fit into a role that doesn’t serve you and the women’s spirit. Simply put, when we resist asking for help, we separate ourselves from the circle of life, the giving and receiving that nature was built on.
There is no shame in asking for help when you have too much on your plate. Think of it this way, acting like a superwoman may get you far up the mountain and maybe even to the top. If you don’t fail to reach the top, which often happens to women who want to do everything by themselves, when you get there you are all alone. This is the feeling “successful women” describes when they reach a dream goal and don’t feel the happiness they expected to experience. I know because I’ve been there.
Here are four suggestions that will benefit your ability to ask and receive help:
ONE. Detach from the Outcome.
Your expectation of rejection, shame or disappointment will consistently deliver rejection, shame, and disappointment. You get what you think about. Instead, be willing to see things improve. I remember the time when I didn’t ask my children to help with the dishes because they didn’t load the dishwasher properly. My need to control may seem funny to you, but that’s what disappointment will do to you if you don’t get these emotions in check. There are a million ways to load a dishwasher, and the dishwasher police will not knock on your door and arrest your children for not maximizing the number of dishes to be washed. This was not about them, but about me.
TWO. Start Slow.
Be willing to lower your expectations. Ask for a hug from someone you know. Pay attention to how you fell when you receive the hug. The embrace can be from a partner, a child, or a close friend. It is crucial that you notice how you feel before, during and after the embrace. Then graduate to asking for a cup of coffee from someone you know and notice how you feel. Again, remember to pay close attention to how you feel before you ask for it, when you get it, and after you receive it.
3. Build Your Receiving Muscles.
Make a list of everything you currently receive. Think of the simple actions such as your coworker got your coffee, or your spouse took the children out of breakfast. Perhaps your boss handled your clients when you were on vacation, you got a hotel upgrade at your last trip, or your kids did the laundry. When your boyfriend got gas in your car, or your neighbor offered to help you at the birthday party counts. The Universe works for you and will confirm what you see. Recognize the current generosity in your life, and more will come your way.
4. Know That You Deserve.
You are a fantastic human being who may have forgotten how great you really are. There are 37+ trillions of cells inside of you that have incredible power and wisdom working with balance, identity, fluidity, and cooperation. The cells of your body respond to energy, and your knowledge alone of your holiness will improve your ability to give without depletion and receiving gracefully.
You are part of this amazing circle of giving and receiving. But you don’t “have” to give to receive. The key word here is “HAVE.” The life circle of giving and receiving is never out of obligation, but of love and generosity. You may receive from a friend, and your friend may receive from someone else. It doesn’t have to come from you. Everyone always gets what they expect.
Practice these simple suggestions, and you will improve your energy of giving and receive. Let me know how you give without depleting your energy and receive gracefully. Feel free to share it on my social media feed and share this article with someone you know could benefit from the wisdom of giving and receiving.