Today’s Word: ‘HELP!” as in… asking for help is not a sign of weakness. It is, ultimately, a sign of humanness.
Perhaps you were among the 17.1 million viewers who watched Oprah Winfrey’s interview with Prince Harry and Meghan, Duchess of Sussex. So much ground was covered in the 110-minute conversation; everything from strained relationships with family members to feeling trapped in one’s own home; from the impact of unfiltered narratives made public in print and social media to confronting racism and possible speculation about a child’s skin color; from episodes of bullying, depression, and suicidal ideation to the effects of silence in the midst of important conversations. In the days since the interview public conversations have take the usual paths of gratitude and ridicule, judgement and empathy, minimization, and acceptance.
At the end of the interview what stood out most for me was the underlying call for help that apparently went unacknowledged. There is a stigma in our modern culture that interprets asking for help as a burden to others and a sign of emotional weakness, an admission of limitations on our part, and it continues to be nearly pandemic in scope, as if we need another one, right? Let me be clear: it is none of those things. Asking for help, seeking assistance, guidance, and perspective is essentially a sign of humanness. Coming to the end of ourselves and finding a caring soul to meet us there is, at the end of the day, a gift of grace!
While it is certainly far too early to call the COVID-19 Pandemic “nearly over and done with” what isn’t nearly over and done with is our shared human struggle to ask for help when we need it. The extent to which we are willing to create safe places, welcome, inviting, and open places for people to share their struggles is the extent to which we will be able to thrive as a spirited, creative connected, present, grateful, generous, and missional culture.
If you need help, ask for help. A courageous, human call for help is just 10 digits away … 800-273-8255.