Ask anyone who knows me. I am a big personality. I make sure people know that I am around. I ask questions, I contribute opinions and ideas but most of all; I ask for support.
I put myself through university cent by cent, moved myself to the UK and back, dragged myself to every corner of the world that I could and started my own company from scratch. And getting the company to a functional, healthy organization (which employs a growing staff base with hundreds of clients) was achieved the selfsame way as I raised my firm network of friends, my rich personal life and general happiness: I ask for support. Unashamedly. All the time.
When it is time for my birthday party, I make sure my friends know it is important to me. If my heart is sore, I reach out and ask for comfort from my close circle. When I need a favour, I call on those in my network who fit the brief. I call on my people to get behind me, endorse me, attend my events. I use Facebook, Instagram and many other platforms to rally support for everything I get up to. Everything. I ask for the support I need.
In my professional life: I call on the wisdom and advice of mentors. I ask my team to go the extra mile, to stick with me through the tough times. I ask my professional network to share a contact that matches each need arising in the business like suppliers, services or ideas. I am not embarrassed to enlist the help of a colleague who has more affinity for legal matters or accounting for example.
I ask for support in my life. It’s amazing how many people don’t mind to be asked. I am unashamed and confident, sure in the knowledge that I will support wherever and whenever I can.
Even when I am on my last legs with fatigue, I will show up for my friends when they are celebrating a special event or need a shoulder to cry or a buddy to laugh with. Although one certainly cannot and must not try be all things to all people – self preserving and balance is vital – I work to know my own limits and know the people in my life, and what is most important to them.
When people call on me for contact details, ideas or advice in my professional life, I prioritize giving support as freely as I have available. I train, nurture and support the heart of my company: the team, as much as I can.
Some people will let you down by not supporting you. Sometimes you won’t (be able to) help someone else. Dust it off. It’s inevitable. For the most part, however, don’t be afraid to ask for support. Everyone needs it, in life and career. Fill your cup. And then: pour!