Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Mayday. Mayday.

May 1st. May Day. As well as a significant calendar date, Mayday, of course, is also the international distress signal in voice communications, inspired by the French m'aider (help me). Although we don't always actually do so, there are times when all of us might be well advised to ask for help. It makes sense to ask an assistant when you can't find something in the supermarket. If your car is making an ominous knocking noise, it's a good idea to take it to the garage.

It's much harder to seek help when you're struggling inside, however. Perhaps you're faced with making a difficult decision, for example. Alternatively, maybe you're battling an intransigent low mood, or are extremely anxious about a developing problem. Asking for help in such circumstances is never easy, in fact it might even feel like an admission of defeat or weakness. But it's neither of those: just think how you feel when a good friend asks for your help. You're probably pleased that they've 'chosen' you, maybe even a little honoured. You know that your clear head and sense of perspective will very likely help them make sense of things.

In the same way that it's not sensible to go on a wild goose chase in the supermarket aisles when you're looking for the raisins, neither is it a good thing to battle on with feelings of anxiety or low mood without asking someone to lend a hand. When you need help, just ask.