Help people even when they can’t help you back (somehow lost behind Hate the Sin)

Please will you read the following sayings and note how much, or little, they resonate with you? I’m interested in knowing how comfortable they make you feel.

Having someone help you doesn’t mean you failed, it just means you’re not alone.

The only mistake you can ever make is not asking help.

Help others achieve their dreams and you will achieve yours.

You don’t need a reason to help people.

Be the light that helps others see.

No one has ever become poor by giving.

If you’re anything like me, you will agree with all of them….but….

Help…I need somebody!

This week I needed practical help with an enormous task I wasn’t physically or logistically able to complete alone. My wonderful mother knew I was struggling and stepped in immediately to offer help. It really puzzled me, that when she was being super-kind and going way above the call of duty to make things easier for me, I found that I was being needlessly and shockingly ungrateful by churlishly declining all but the absolutely necessary assistance .

I realised, with more than a little surprise, that I had quite a lot of thinking around accepting help and that I had unwittingly written myself the rule that my mother who had selflessly helped me all my life, was at the time of her life, now in advancing years to change role to the receiver of help. I hadn’t consciously made the rule and therefore hadn’t discussed it with mum (our sub-conscious is very clever, running our lives behind the scenes…but not always exactly as we’d have chosen!). As soon as I realised what was happening, I apologised and thanked her, both for helping me and for putting up with my lack of gratitude. You might like to read Resentment is your new best friend.

This experience made me explore my feelings. I found the above statements and read them carefully. Whereas before, I had thought I agreed with them all, I now saw that I only agreed with them as long as it wasn’t me who was being helped. I found it really, really hard to accept them as advice for myself. Maybe you’d like to read them again to see if this is also true for you. There is no right or wrong, bad or good, it is what it is but it’s interesting how we tell ourselves, and truly believe, that we think a certain way when in fact, under closer scrutiny, we actually don’t!

Help yourself

Altruism is when we unselfishly help others, expecting nothing in return; we can derive a lot of pleasure out of doing something out of the goodness of our hearts..though, this is not why we do it. I see now that when my mother offered to help me, she was being purely kind and self-sacrificing, and by not accepting, I was denying her the warm glow we feel when we have been able to be generous.

When I read the following quotes I realised that when I had to ask for help this week, it felt uncomfortable to admit that I was simply a human, and not super-woman, as I tend to believe. Suddenly, I was in the role of taker and, when connected to me, that word wasn’t nice.

There are two types of people in this world – givers and takers. The takers may eat better but the givers sleep better.

Givers must set boundaries because takers can’t.

I wondered what had caused so many of us to be absolutely rubbish at asking for and accepting help. I think it may be due to the idea that

God helps those that help themselves

I found that I had definitely thought , on some level, that I wasn’t worth being helped if I wasn’t doing all I could to help myself. Yet with a kind of double-think, I knew that sometimes people weren’t in a position, for one or more of several reasons to help themselves and that I often chose to be kind to them.

Go on – ask

It’s okay to ask for help. Really. People like being able to help….don’t deny them the pleasure that being kind-hearted brings. We can pay them back, when we are able, and if that isn’t possible, we can pay it forward by being kind to someone else in need. This is a lovely way to show compassion to someone without asking for, or expecting any reward.

If we all gave spontaneous help to those who weren’t in a position to return the favour, who maybe we have never met before nor will see again, just think how wonderful our world would be.

Next week I’ll be talking about sinning (yep, that’s what I said!). Until then, have a wonderful week and please let me know if you have any questions or comments.

Love, Catherine x

No Comments

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.