Reach out to receive help, allows other to use their gifts!

Facing the tough economic times of today requires a certain tenacity and sense of hope. While we are experiencing layoffs, seeing closed storefronts and living the reality of cutting back on expenses, we are also in times of great economic opportunity.

Many dreams are being called to the fore to fill the current void. This is a powerful time of creativity and innovation. Studies show entrepreneurs are seeing the opportunity and they are taking the leap. While the energy of creating a dream is powerful and exciting it also masks realities that are tough to face.

While an entrepreneur might have all the skills to DO the work of his dream business, paint, build, heal, create…do they have the skills to run the business aspect? The marketing, financial, relationship and operational skills of running a business are often elusive to a new business owner. Additionally, many new business owners often underestimate the emotion of starting a business and these emotions often cloud good judgment.

Making decisions where to invest in a business are some of the toughest decisions a business owner will make. Weighing the options and making rational decisions as where the right resources should be invested at any different stage of the business requires the business owner to be fully willing to look at themselves and the business honestly.

Keeping focused on the reality of business as you keep your eye on the possibilities and the growth of the company requires honesty and the ability to look at things objectively. Reaching out to find perspectives from others is difficult for most business owners. Admitting they do not know it all tests their humility and forces them to be honest with them selves and teams. Many do not and business fail each day.

Most recently suicides and attempts are up drastically. Like other times in history pressures are too much for us to handle alone. Suicide notes mention the pressures of the current financial environment, like they did in the Great Depression.

We have huge populations of people believing in the "Dream" and yet do not have the humility to ask for help to create it. Wheels get put into motion to begin to allow it to happen, yet the truth is, most people DO need support in order to create, plan and execute any meaningful effort.

As a business coach, every day I witness individuals and business owners swirl in struggle rather than reach out for help. The stigma of asking for support has somehow become greater than the power of the dream. Frustrated by this phenonomena, I delved into understanding the cycle of help. I found shocking and inspiring information.

Our American notion of independence has paralyzed our ability to reach out beyond ourselves and ask for simple guidance on things such as setting up a budget, dealing with day-to-day stress and managing critical relationships inside the home and business.

We have set up a culture that asking for help is for "those people". Ya know the ones we have all of these charitable organizations supporting. The people who have fallen of the edge. Yet if all the people who were "on the edge" would reach out for support, our communities and economy would not struggle as much.

While researched for my book, Who's Helping Who?, which will be released this spring, I interviewed over 150 people from all walks of life. The workbook explores the cycle of help and how giving and receiving must be approached in a balanced way. The research clearly revealed our ability to receive is as critical an asset as it is to give and is a factor in personal success. Those who were most successful, had mastered the ability to ask for help be it from a professional or a friend at the right stage. Many spoke of the investment into their lives, business and relationships hinged on self-respect, love and self worth.

During the interviews the one word that came up in every interview was WORTHINESS.
I had asked three initial questions of every person I spoke with.
1. Who do you give help to?
2. Where do you ask for help from?
3. What is the hardest thing you have had to ask for help with?

These three questions created amazing conversations, yet the worthiness topic prevailed. Similar statements came up over and over.
1. Are the people who ask for help worthy of receiving it?
2. Am I worthy to receive the help I need?

This powerful emotion of worthiness informs our decisions to give help and receive help. As we move through our lives day to day, we are often faced with our own worthiness as we work to have rich and fulfilling lives. Seeing ourselves as worthy of being invested in requires a level of self-esteem that comes from being in healthy balanced relationships with friends, family and professionals. Professional support comes from sources such as coaches, ministers, financial advisors and health practitioners.

To bring this home…What might change as a result of YOU asking for help? What support does your business need right now? What area needs investment? Take the step to ask and I know, your life and business will evolve. Go for it!

Florence Haridan, owner of Gathering Coaching Consultancy, is a certified coach, author and motivational speaker. Gathering runs a FREE monthly event BUSINESS VOICES to help professionals grow. For more information visit

Author's Bio: 

Florence Haridan, owner of Gathering Coaching Consultancy, is a certified coach, author and motivational speaker. Gathering runs a FREE monthly event BUSINESS VOICES to help professionals grow. She is in the process of Launching her book "Who's Helping Who?" In July 2010 with an interactive installation in Butterfield Too, one of the hottest Galleries in Saint Augustine, Florida.

Those who know Florence have considered her creative since the day she held a Crayola. Or should we say, the day she started melting them, chopping them up, mixing them. She never saw it as just a crayon — it was a way to express herself and her ideas.

From creating murals for plays in the neighborhood as a child, to developing an employee recognition program, to hosting a bi-monthly creativity dinner party, she brings imaginative types together to see what happens…usually great things! Florence personally enjoys the iterative process and is seen as highly collaborative. She brings this approach into every aspect of how she runs her business, her workshops and her life. These experiences have moved her to bring people together in new ways and is why gathering was born.

Florence knows a creative outlet is critical to growth, be it art, music, cooking, a garden. Each of us is fueled by the creative spirit whether or not we understand or recognize it. Florence’s goal is to nurture the creativity in all those around her.

Florence has led and supported branding, design, advertising and e-commerce initiatives for some of the largest companies in the world, including Citibank, The Home Depot, Sears, American Express, Fidelity, J&J and AT&T. Her experience ranges from product development and launch, to realignment and revitalization, all of which have helped Florence develop her big-picture vision. This is one of her greatest skills. She is able to step back and understand many levels and languages with varying degrees of complexity.

Florence has also successfully run small and large teams for companies such as McCann Direct, Grey Advertising, AT&T and Citibank. She has been an artist her entire life, managing and supporting teams of artists, designers, writers and photographers. She has a keen respect for the creative process and embraces the notion that each individual has a unique way of getting things done. Florence believes it is through this personal process that one achieves the greatest flow. Her work focuses on helping individuals articulate, accept and leverage.

While still at Citibank, Florence attended The Coaches Training Institute, a school accredited by the International Coaches Federation (ICF). She received her certification as a Certified Professional Co-Active Coach (CPCC). Florence chose to complete the certification process, because she believes in and supports the philosophy that coaching is a profession. She believes the skills and personal exploration acquired by training, augments and supports life experience.

Florence served as the President of the First Coast Coaches Association (FCCA), the local chapter of ICF for two years and continues to support their mission. She manages a free monthly event called “Experience Coaching”, which allows individuals to learn about and experience coaching in a safe and energetic environment.