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Asking for help while living with a chronic condition

68679483 - help sign in hands on blue sky backgroundLife is busy, we have a lot on our plate, and often it feels like the responsibilities just keep piling on. Our kid needs this, our friend wants that… not to mention all of our work and household obligations. It can be almost too much to bear at times. Yet, we don’t want to ask for help because we don’t want others to know we’re struggling. But, everybody needs help from time to time, and if you’re living with a chronic condition, rest and stress relief are even more important. Getting a little bit of help is absolutely necessary.

Don’t feel bad asking for help

Are you the kind of person who hates to ask for help? Consider this. When you have a chronic condition, you need to conserve your energy levels. When you take on too much, it can sap you of your energy VERY quickly. Most likely, that to-do list will be too much to bear if your energy levels dip too low. Plus, stress can exasperate problems. When you live with a chronic condition, this can mean flares get triggered, which will only make you feel worse and more irritable. Asking for help can help reduce your load and make you feel better, as difficult as it can be to do.

Asking for help can be good for others, too

Not only can asking for help be beneficial for you, but it can actually be a blessing to others, as odd as that may sound. While you may feel like you’re putting more responsibilities on someone else when you ask for help, people actually feel good helping others. The ones who truly care for you want to make your life easier and help you out. Most people just don’t know how to help. Telling them exactly what you need can be a relief.

Did you know when you let others help you out, it has the potential to increase their happiness levels? Think about how good you feel when you do something nice for someone else. By asking for help, you’re not only improving your well-being, but the well-being of others, believe it or not.

When you ask for help it shows a certain amount of strength, because you’re taking control of your schedule and health. You’re showing you’re strong enough to be open and vulnerable about what you need. You have the strength to say “I can’t do this alone.” It’s not a weakness. It shows you know what you need and how to be honest with yourself and others, and there’s no shame in that.

Living with a chronic condition requires some adjustments

Life can be hard, and when you have a chronic condition, it can become even more so. You have to make lifestyle changes to cope, and you may have to adapt to a new way of doing things. You also have to let yourself off the hook. Yes, you can still do things, but you need to optimize your energy and health by allowing others to help. Take an honest look at what your daily to-do list looks like. Be okay with not getting it all done. Open up to others. If the person isn’t available to help, they’ll tell you. If this happens, don’t feel discouraged. Go to someone else. Don’t be afraid to turn to family or friends.

Others may not always understand what you’re going through with your chronic condition, but when you’re open and honest with them, they can understand it more. Being vulnerable with your loved ones can help grow your relationships.

So, what are you going to do after reading this? Ask for help. It’s okay, really. Asking for help will be better for you, and can reduce flares from your chronic condition.

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Comments

  1. Sarah Cummings says:

    My mother has this issue of not telling people when she needs help. I find it really worrying but she doesn’t want to be a burden. I’m going to send her this article. Hopefully she’ll see things from a different perspective.

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