Are you someone who likes to solve her own problems?
When things go wrong, or I feel stuck, my tendency is to withdraw and try to figure out what to do by myself. I get quiet and try to solve things alone. Sometimes, it doesn’t even occur to me that asking for help is an option. I hate to admit it, but I’ve spent ridiculous amounts of time Googling, reading, and looking for help when I probably could have just asked.
I’ve always been this way. I’m a good problem solver, and I’m actually pretty great at finding the answers, but the idea that solving everything myself is the best option is a myth. This myth has kept me stuck or limited me more times than I care to count.
I’m working on it. And most days, I’m a lot better than I used to be.
See, now I know that flying solo is not always about being strong and independent. In fact, in the past, I’ve done ridiculous things without help because I felt silly admitting I didn’t know the answer or asking for help when I didn’t even really know what I needed.
I’ve fallen for the lie that everyone else has this figured out, and I should too. And it’s cost me.
As I said, I’m a work in progress, but I’m definitely better at letting help in than I used to be.
Still (and maybe you can relate), sometimes I have to remind myself that when I’m struggling and I isolate myself, I’m severely limiting my options. I don’t know what I don’t know, and I certainly don’t know what my blind spots are. The older I get, the more I realize how much time I can spend lost in those blind spots – and how refreshing it is when someone else (who isn’t blind) can point out a door that can release me from a place where I feel trapped.
Sometimes, just having that fresh perspective can make what seemed so hard flow easily.
Over the years, I’ve noticed that lots of women seem to default to isolation when it comes to touchy personal subjects like overwhelm, overload, and overeating. We hide, we spend too much time in our heads (either coming up with “solutions” or berating ourselves for not following through), and in the end, this flying solo business keeps lots of smart, amazing women trapped in patterns that keep them stuck.
Even worse, if you have this tendency, you may find that the worse you feel, the harder it is to connect or seek support.
Are blind spots keeping you stuck or overeating? You can change the pattern.
It’s important to remember that you can make different choices. It doesn’t feel natural or graceful, but using weak muscles never does.
I ask for help a lot more now. I practice seeking out expertise and learning from others. And you know what? Asking for help and saying, “I don’t know what to do” flows out of my mouth a lot more easily than it used to.
And I spend a lot less time feeling stuck.
Do you spend more time than you should flying solo? Is there something you feel lost or confused, or even hopeless about – because you don’t know the answer?
If so, take it out of the darkness that is your lonely brain. It’s probably hiding in a blind spot. Say it out loud. Let your confusion see the light of day. Share it with someone else. Be brave and ask for help. You may be amazed at what happens.