This is my big kick right now. I'm convinced that if everyone practiced asking for what they need, interpersonal issues and workflow inefficiencies would evaporate.
But when difficulty arises, some people shut down and don't know where to start...or they bully toward what they need and alienate themselves in the process. (I'm sure you've seen both types.) In either case, you get caught up in self-limiting thoughts or become so paralyzed by emotion that you're stuck. So how can you deal?
Learn to ask for what you need. It's a practice that requires introspection, honesty and courage. Done well, it's conveyed with clarity, respect and grace.
Asking for what you need is your bridge to overcoming frustration and getting what you want. It sounds redundant, but it can mean:
- Information: Ask for what you need to know to move forward
- Collaboration: Ask for what you need help on from others
- Purpose: Ask for what you need to understand why
- Action: Ask for what you need to do next
What do you need to say, ask for or do? Getting yourself unstuck sometimes looks like:
- Hearing the backstory
- Seeing proof
- Saying your peace (a.k.a. being heard)
- Securing a specialist
- Finding how-to steps
- Partnering with a coach or a champion
- Trying something new
- Shutting it down
- Changing the timeline
When you're stuck, simply posing this question to yourself can create movement.
To be clear: I am not saying, "Ask someone for permission." No. Ask yourself what you need and then take action on that. Introspection. Honesty. Courage.
You've been called upon for your talents, your vision and your voice. Asking for what you need is a freeing duty.
Make it simple. Keep it moving.
Coming up soon on #askforwhatyouneed: a video for leaders, a personal story, and more.