A few weeks I published a post about getting over the fear of asking for help and the need to accept help from others. I got several
emails from people telling me they really needed that reminder. However, it wasn’t until recently that I realized I made a big mistake in writing that post. I didn’t tell the whole story. While asking for help is an important question, you should never be afraid to ask, asking how you can help others is even more important. In fact, I think “How can I help you,” is definitely the most important question you must ask everyone you meet. Oddly, enough it’s the question that doesn’t get asked nearly as much as it should.
I want you to answer these questions about yourself. When was the last time you asked someone to do something for you? It could be something simple such as asking your child to get your mail or something more involved such as asking a co-worker to help you with an assignment.
Figured it out? Good! Now ask yourself the last time you asked someone else how you could help or serve them? I’m willing to bet, the answer to that question is a little tougher to come by. Don’t worry, you’re not alone.
The truth is we’ve become a society about “me.” If it doesn’t interest “me”, has nothing to do with “me” and doesn’t help “me”, you’d be hard pressed to find “me” doing anything about it. It sounds silly, but that seems to be the thought process that’s inundated our world. Why else would so many people feel compelled to take “selfies”, update us on what they had for dinner, ask questions on social networking only pertaining to themselves, and accept invitations to networking events only if benefits them?
We’ve become extremely selfish in almost every aspect of our lives whether it be school based, business based, or home-life based. Unfortunately what most people don’t realize is that being selfish and forgetting to ask that important question will send them straight to failure. For example, when was the last time you had success at a networking meeting just handing out your business cards to anyone without ever asking for anyone else’s? You probably didn’t make that many connections or get the results you expected. That’s because you made it all about you and forgot about the needs of others.
In a world where everyone is chasing their own goals and trying to better themselves, asking everyone you meet seems counterproductive. But that one important questions may be exactly what you need to get you where you want to go. Not only will asking how you can help someone make you a more compassionate person, it can help you reach your goals to.
I have to admit I don’t always ask this question out loud to everyone I meet. However, I do ask the question mentally on a daily basis, such as when I write a new blog post. The questions usually go something like this.
How can I make your life better?
What can I do to serve you?
How can my talents put you in better shape?
How can I give you what you need to succeed?
I’ve found that when asking questions such as the one’s above while working on my blog, I’m more likely to have my post shared by others and more likely to feel good about serving others.
Asking how you can serve others provides a ripple affect. After all, every successful person you’ve ever known has received help from someone whether it be a teacher, mentor, or family members. People rarely do things on their own. And people rarely help others reach success if they seem selfish,insincere and callous. Your efforts to help others reach success will make people more likely to help you reach your success. And nothing feels better than knowing you were part of someone reaching their goals while also reaching your own.
How can I help you? It’s a question I ask myself every time I sit down to pen a new blog post, reach out to potential clients and even cook for my husband. Somehow asking that small questions makes all the difference.
So I challenge you to ask, “How can I help you?” to everyone you meet. You’ll soon see why it really is the most important question you NEED to ask everyone you meet. Prepare to be surprised by how much you can actually get when you decide to give to other first.
What can I do to help you? How often do you ask how you can help others?
TERRIfic Quip: No one has ever become poor by giving.