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Little Find

How to ask for help

While helping others may be a source of fulfillment, what can you do when you’re emotionally and cognitively overwhelmed yourself?

You’ll need all the support possible to get through this stressful pandemic period. But if you want people to hear you, you need to know how to express your need for help. And there’s nothing easy about that, especially when everyone around you is in pretty much the same situation.  

Yet according to Heidi Grant, knowing how to ask for help when you need it actually strengthens your confidence, and that of your colleagues. So what’s the most constructive way to ask for help? How can you call on others without feeling like you’re forcing their hand? 

  • The first step is to overcome your reluctance to ask for help.  
  • Then try to understand that certain, often intuitive, ways of asking for help are actually counterproductive because they make the other person less likely to want to provide that help.  
  • You need to figure out the subtle signals that motivate people to help you and how to send these signals in the right way. 

Knowing how to ask for help is the first step to getting back on your feet and being ready to help others.  

To go further:

All the Help we can Get.

Podcast featuring social psychologist Heidi Grant (Harvard Business Review, 5 October 2020).

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Tagged with: change, help, others, motivation
Françoise Tollet
Published by Françoise Tollet
She spent 12 years in industry, working for Bolloré Technologies, among others. She co-founded Business Digest in 1992 and has been running the company since 1998. And she took the Internet plunge in 1996, even before coming on board as part of the BD team.