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Oct 29

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Asking for Help

Bear one another’s burdens and so fulfill the law of Christ” – Galations 6:2

Do you regularly find yourself staggering under a heavy load? Do you try to do it all on your own without any outside help? Do you think it is a sign of weakness to admit that you have more than you can handle and you could use a little help?

OverwhelmedI have found myself in these situations listed above at one time or another and here are some things that I have learned in the process of trying to learn balance and shed some of my perfectionist ways.

Address my priorities – Sometimes I find that I am saying yes too much and need to say no more so that I can preserve that precious time with my family. Sometimes it means choosing between the good and the best. This year we had to eliminate 4H from our homeschool schedule. I really battled with this one. I wanted my kids to have the benefit of the things that 4H offers, but we just had so many great choices – homeschool co-op, book club, AWANA, karate, soccer, field trips and the list could go on. In the end, we haven’t even missed the activity this year because we have had so many other great opportunities. I have had to say no to joining the choir and teaching piano lessons for this season of my life. I feel that certain seasons of life require a different focus and I just can’t do it all.Teaching at 4H

Redistribute the load -  As I have begun investing more time into my blog and as the kids are getting older and the homeschool planning and teaching are taking more of my time, I have found that the household chores seem to stack up. In January, we revisited the kid’s chores and had them begin to take over more of the daily chores to help free up some time for me. It has been such a blessing to know that if all else fails, the kitchen will be swept and the living room vacuumed daily when the kids are faithful to do their chores. They are helping with the dishes, putting away laundry and helping dad mow the lawn. Just teaching and assigning the kids a few simple chores that they can do well, have helped me keep my head above water. Some families are able to hire a mother’s helper or a maid. You could also consider swapping kids with another mom occasionally to give you some free time or time to catch up on your housework, etc.

Ask for help – This has been the hardest one for me. I like to feel like I am in control and can do it all myself. I don’t know if it stems from being a firstborn or is just an inborn characteristic of my personality but for as long as I can remember I have wanted to be independent and self-sufficient. These are good characteristics but can easily be taken too far. God meant for us to help each other, for us to bear one another’s burdens and for us to rely on Him for help, grace, sustenance, etc. Recently I found myself with several deadlines, church commitments, classes to teach at homeschool co-op and the household chores stacking up. My mom called and I just told her I was overwhelmed and had so much to do. She offered to take the kids for a couple of hours to help me out. I usually just say, “No, that is ok, I will get it done.” This time I took her up on her offer and I was amazed at how much I was able to get done in those two hours. I was so productive! It helped lift my discouraged mood and the kids had a blast with their grandmother. Just this week, I was feeling burdened by our abundance of laundry, dishes and clutter related to our recent vacation and camping trip. My hubby offered to take the kids to soccer practice and even though I usually go with the family and use that time to exercise at the park, I took him up on his offer and I stayed home and completed the laundry, vacuumed the house and cleaned all the dishes in a single hour! Learning to take help from others is hard and so is asking for help, but I feel like this is something that God is teaching me right now. It requires some humility and openness, but in the end, through asking for help, I was ministered to and have been able to gain perspective in my journey through life.

Do you identify with this post? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

Permanent link to this article: http://conversaving.com/2013/10/29/asking-for-help/

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  1. de

    Hi Jenni….You are such an insightful person for whom I have tremendous admiration! Give all a hug for us.
    Love to all, Debbie

    1. David

      Thanks for your kind remarks!

  2. Gail

    I so can relate to what your saying. Fortunately at the ripe old age of 56 I am learning a. to say no, b. to allow others to do things and just be happy they are done, even if they are not done the way I would do them, it’s ok! and c. the hardest, to ask for help realizing it does not diminish me in any way and the person who helps actually feels good about helping. My husband always asks if he can help and usually I would say no thanks, I got it, but he tells me, he would like to help so I can be done and relax with him and he feels bad I am always busy. One thing I would add to your list when you have someone helping with whatever, is to take some time just for yourself, do something to revive yourself, a pedicure only takes about an hour but is really a nice treat or whatever would give you a little lift.

    This all kind of goes along with the Martha and Mary story. Yes things need to get done but many things we think need doing, really aren’t important. Starting the day in God’s word, praying and praising Him really helps me put the whole day in perspective.

    1. David

      Yes, funny you should mention the Martha and Mary story. I just had to teach that story last Sunday to a kid’s sunday school class. I think God is trying to tell me something.

  1. Homeschooling Essentials - Day 5 - Support System | Conversaving

    […] 1. to bear or hold up (a load, mass, structure, part, etc.); serve as a foundation for. 2. to sustain or withstand (weight, pressure, strain, etc.) without giving way; serve as a prop for. 3. to undergo or endure, especially with patience or submission; tolerate. 4. to sustain (a person, the mind, spirits, courage, etc.) under trial or affliction: They supported him throughout his ordeal. 5. to maintain (a person, family, establishment, institution, etc.) by supplying with things necessary to existence; provide for: to support a family. After reading through these definitions, I would definitely say that a homeschooling mom or dad needs support. Our culture tells us we can do it all, have it all and be happy, but I have found that trying to do it all without support leads me down a road of burnout, frustration and exhaustion. I don’t think we were meant to traverse this life alone and God will put people in our lives to help and support us if we are willing to open ourselves up to people. We have to let down the walls and learn to be more transparent. I have had to learn to ask for help. […]

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