Happiness – a positive psychology approach including asking for help!

Happiness – a positive psychology approach including asking for help!

By David J. Pollay

Let me check something out with you. Pretend for a moment that your friend, child, spouse, employee, or your boss said to you: “I would like to learn from you. It would mean a lot to me if you would help me.” How would you feel? My bet is that you would feel great: We all like to believe that we have something to offer the people we care about.

People want to help us when we are humble enough to ask for help.

We demonstrate our curiosity when we seek assistance. We telegraph to the world that we are on a search for new ways to do, see, and experience things. Psychologist Todd Kashdan of George Mason University wrote a chapter about the character strength of curiosity in Martin Seligman and Christopher Peterson’s book Character Strengths and Virtues. In it Kashdan reviewed research that showed when people demonstrate curiosity, they learn more, are more engaged at work, and perform better academically. Curiosity leads to better performance. So, this week, let’s ask for help. Here’s our plan:

(1) Think of two important areas in your life in which you could use some ideas, help, or input.

(2) Write down a few questions you could ask people about these two critical areas.

(3) Then identify three people you could approach to ask your questions. Choose a friend, a family member, and a colleague.

(4) Finally, ask your questions. But first tell them why you appreciate them (i.e., their perspective, ideas, expertise, or their knowledge of you), and ask them if they would be willing to share their thoughts with you about something important to you. When they say “yes” – and they always will – then pose your questions to them.

(5) Listen with humility. Write down their answers. And thank them for their insights and their time.

To read the full article at Positive Psychology News Daily – click here