If you find yourself saying “I don’t need any help” more often than saying yes when someone offers help, then you may be the type of person who finds it easy to support others but difficult when others want to reciprocate. It is easy to mistake accepting help with weakness. In fact, accepting help helps us remember that we are all human and can’t always do it all. It reminds us that we are all vulnerable and expressing your own vulnerability is a true act of strength. 

Here are some things to keep in mind when someone offers support: 

  •     When you accept help from others you are giving that person an opportunity to give.
  •     Universally, giving feels good and is a gateway to our own happiness.
  •     When you let someone help, you also let them in and allow them to become more connected to you. 
  •     It makes us feel purposeful and appreciated. 
  •     Your relationships will only strengthen as you gain the ability and willingness to receive as well as to give.

In difficult times, here are some things you can say to make it easier to accept help from people:

-       Right now I am overwhelmed, but I really appreciate you reaching out.  Perhaps in a couple of weeks I’ll be more ready to accept your help, I know I’ll need it.

-       Thank you for your offer to bring over dinner. Right now, we are overloaded with food and it’s just too much.  It would be wonderful if you don’t mind checking back in with me in a few weeks and I would really appreciate a dinner then.

-       We don’t really eat fish. However, if you would like to make chicken, that would be wonderful.

-       At this moment, we really need privacy.  Please don’t take this the wrong way. I will be open to meeting for a coffee or a visit in a few weeks.  Thank you so much for understanding.

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