I recently talked with a couple of prospective coaching clients, but had to sadly admit they were “beyond” help. It’s not that I couldn’t address their issues, or that I wasn’t confident that I could develop a strategy that would enable them to overcome the obstacles standing in their way.
They were “beyond” help because they spent the entire interview call assuring me that they knew everything there was to know, and that, despite the fact that things weren’t going the way they wanted them to, they really weren’t open to suggestion.
I felt very sad for them, because it’s entirely likely that their problems will persist. The problems may even get worse, leaving these people frustrated and worried. These were smart people who had accomplished a lot. Something had even driven them to inquire about help. But in the end, their egos wouldn’t permit them to actually accept that help.
I think at one point or another, we’ve all been like that.
If you’re a parent, you know the frustration of having a toddler–or a teen–resist asking for help because they’re convinced they can do it on their own. At a certain level, that’s an opportunity for growth and learning. But in the cases where you’ve given it your best shot, done everything in your power, and it still isn’t working, you’ve got two choices: keep beating your head against the wall or shove your ego out of the way to get the help you need.
What are the places in your life where your progress is stalled? Might it be because you’re resistant to asking for help? Is your ego worth whatever it’s costing you to achieve less success than you could attain? It’s difficult to humble ourselves enough to ask for help, but the rewards far outweigh the embarrassment of admitting that we don’t know everything.
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