[nfbwatlk] no wonder some people don't help

Lauren Merryfield lauren at catlines.com
Sun Dec 14 11:49:31 UTC 2014


No wonder some people do not help, given the kind of advice in this article.
When we help someone, we might need to focus on them, not ourselves. we
might go outside of our own comfort zone. We might be inconvenienced when
helping someone. 





Helping Out: When A Little Help For Your Friends is Just Too Much

Written by Jerry Minchinton


Helping Out: When A Little Help For Your Friends is Just Too Much


Although most of us don't mind doing favors now and then, hardly anyone
wants to make a career of it. Unhappily, some people have no qualms about

others if doing so helps them achieve their goals. People like this need no
encouragement to try to make us their personal servants. Once they've zeroed

in on us, we may be asked to do almost anything: provide transportation,
repair plumbing, groom a dog, run errands, make a loan, or perform thousands

other unwelcome activities.


When we have exhausted our largely ineffective stock of delaying tactics and
feel we have no choice but to give in to their requests, we do it sullenly,

resenting those we feel unable to refuse and despising ourselves for our
weakness. Although helping these people may give us some pleasure initially,

good feelings vanish when we finally realize we are being used.


What To Do


Just what are our obligations when others seek our help? Obviously, there is
no "one-size-fits-all" answer. While it would be unwise to thoughtlessly

to do whatever others ask, it would be unkind and unfeeling to automatically
refuse their requests.


What shall we do then, the next time we're asked for a favor and are
uncertain whether to grant it? Here are some guidelines to make our
decisions much



1. Assess the relative importance of what you're asked to do.


While some people ask for assistance only when matters are serious, others
have no qualms about wasting our time on trivia. It is simpler, therefore,

learn to categorize another's request for help as either a need or a want.


Once we've made this distinction, we may agree to drive across town to pick
up someone's medication, but we won't play chauffeur for someone searching

for a lampshade in exactly the right shade of pink. When we are clear on the
differences between needs and wants, we are less likely to let others'

triumph over our common sense.


2. Put your own needs first.


Those who told us it was selfish to put our personal welfare before others'
may have believed they were giving us sound advice, but unless they were

to prepare us for sainthood, they were not. Although self-sacrifice sounds
noble, it is impractical and potentially disastrous. Since we can't rely on

others to look out for us, we must do it ourselves, which means making our
personal requirements our highest priority.


Only when we can adequately provide for our own needs will we be in a
position to help those who can't. It is good to remember that although we
may not

be the most important person in the world, we are the most important person
in our world.


3. Don't help people who are able to help themselves.


There is an ocean of difference between those who genuinely require help and
those who could handle matters themselves but prefer not to. When we help

people who don't need it, we encourage their dependency and let them believe
they can avoid responsibility for their lives.


Although we may face objections when we refuse to help the able, in the long
run everyone comes out ahead when people learn to take care of themselves.

Keep in mind that sometimes not helping people is a greater favor than
coming to their aid.


4. Stop being nice when you don't feel like it.


We are not obligated to do things for people merely because they ask us. If
we are asked to do something we'd rather not, we are free to say no. Not

will this increase our self-respect, it will increase others' respect for


When we have trouble refusing, we are easily victimized and are often looked
on with contempt. If we do not say "Yes" every time we are asked, people

be more appreciative of our help when we give it.


5, Pay no attention to your popularity rating.


Some of us are afraid to be firm or assertive because we think others will
dislike us or become angry, and, of course, it is possible they will. But

who resent our standing up for ourselves aren't the kind of people who will
be our friends, anyway. They are only interested in our welfare to the

that it affects their own. Trying to please others won't make us well-liked
-- just overworked and under-appreciated.


6. Don't solve problems people have created for themselves.


When someone's life seems to consist of a series of disasters, it's often
because he creates problems for himself through lack of planning or lack of

for consequences. Unfortunately, people who are in the habit of creating
problems rarely want our advice, just our assistance. Helping those with

problems is usually a waste of time and effort because unless people are
allowed to experience the effects of their actions, they have little reason

change them.


7. Don't help people who can help you in return, but don't.


If past favors remain unreturned, we have no obligation to perform any more.
One-way streets are for traffic, not human relationships. And don't naively

assume that sooner or later the person asking will guiltily realize he's
already asked too much and apologetically cease his requests. Chances that

optimistic scenario will ever take place are more than a million to one.
Those who continually ask favors of us and fail to repay them don't think of

as a fellow human being but as a somewhat useful object, like an umbrella or
a toaster.


8. Treat your family members like people.


Some of us have been afflicted with relatives who believe that their kinship
entitles them to behave inconsiderately and unreasonably. Respond to them

as you would to any non-family member. Close relationships should be a
source of love and happiness, not an excuse for exploitation.


It is helpful to remind ourselves that family members are human beings first
and relatives second, and we should judge their requests on their merits,

not their location on the family tree. It is true blood is thicker than
water, but it's also considerably more expensive.


9. Avoid compromising your ethics or principles.


At one time or another most of us have been asked to lie or falsify
information for another person and have felt uncomfortable at the idea of
doing it.

This kind of request puts us in an awkward position; we don't want to anger
the person making it, but neither do we want to do something that is

to our principles.


Be clear about this: no one has the right to ask us to compromise our
ideals, values, conscience, or reputation. Those who do are thinking only of


10. Set a realistic limit to your giving.


"Give till it hurts" is poor advice, whether it pertains to our time, money,
or energy. If we deprive ourselves of necessities in order to give to

we are likely to become resentful toward those we help when we realize our
gifts are prompted by guilt rather than generosity.


A better and more realistic motto would be, "Give as long as you enjoy it,
and stop when it causes you pain." If we establish limits before a favor is

asked of us, we will be in a much better position to say "No" when we


Protecting Ourselves From Unreasonable Requests


Helping Out: When A Little Help For Your Friends is Just Too Much

Essentially, there are three things we can do to protect ourselves from
unreasonable requests. 


First, become familiar with the ideas listed above.


Second, learn to apply them to requests others make of us (and maybe even to
requests we make of others). By taking these two steps, we will acquire the

mental clarity needed to eliminate many irritating and inconvenient
activities from our lives and gain the courage to refuse unreasonable


Third, we must learn to appreciate our value as a human being and increase
our self-esteem and self-respect. When we are conscious of our true worth,

will automatically be a staunch advocate for our own rights.


While it is great to be able to give help to others when they genuinely need
it, where do we draw the line? Does being compassionate mean we must bend

over backward when others ask us to or that we must assist in solving
everyone's problems or gratifying their desires? Definitely not. When
helping others

causes problems for us, it is time for a careful review of ourselves and our


Life is infinitely more pleasant when we possess the ability to comfortably
refuse unreasonable or inconvenient requests. If we'd like to refuse

that aren't really ours and want to avoid feeling angry and resentful when
people don't respect our needs, we must keep one important fact in mind: If

we don't acknowledge and respect ourselves and our needs, neither will
anyone else.


Important Ideas to Consider:

list of 4 items

It's up to me to look out for my own interests.


My first obligation is to myself and my well-being.


Sometimes I may do people a favor by not doing as they ask. My needs and
requirements deserve the highest priority.


Other people are probably thinking about what is best for them, not best for

list end


Questions To Ask Yourself:

list of 6 items

If I don't look out for myself, who will look out for me? Is my attitude
toward helping others realistic?


Do I help others when it would be better for them to operate on their own?


Do I ask people for help when I don't actually need it?


Do I often feel resentful because I let people talk me into doing things I


Do I knowingly allow people to take advantage of me because I don't know how
to refuse?


Do I ever let fear of someone's anger or dislike persuade me to do as they
ask, even when I know I shouldn't?

list end




1) Practice saying "No." Say it aloud, say it in your mind, and say it to
yourself in the mirror. Mentally recreate past situations where you should

said no but didn't, and imagine repeating the situation, but firmly and
finally saying no. Remember that, in declining to do things you don't want
to do,

you're being truthful and honest and increasing your self-respect.


2) Make a list of five or six phrases that are polite but nonetheless
clearly and truthfully state that you decline to do what is being asked of
you. Say

these phrases over and over each day until you feel thoroughly comfortable
saying them. Begin with something such as, "I'm afraid I've made other

or "I'm sorry, but it won't be convenient to do that."


3) Establish your personal standards for essential and non-essential
requests. (It may be a good idea to put this list on paper so you can review
it at

intervals, if necessary) Here are some questions that can help you make up
your mind.


* Is the situation an actual emergency?


* Would the one asking me be willing to repay me in some manner if he or she
were able?


* Will helping cost me money or time I can't afford to spend?


* Is my assistance being asked for a "need" or a "want"?


* Am I being asked to do something those asking can do themselves?


* Will helping be an inconvenience for me?


* Is it something I genuinely dislike doing?


* Am I being asked to help someone solve a self-created problem?


* Will doing what I'm being asked to do violate any of my personal rules for


Reprinted with permission of the publisher, 

Arnford House, Vanzant, MO, USA. C1999. 




This article is excerpted from the book:


Wising Up by Jerry Minchinton. 

Wising Up: How To Stop Making Such A Mess of Your Life 

by Jerry Minchinton.


Info/Order this book.


More books by this author.




About The Author


Jerry Minchinton

Jerry Minchinton has read extensively about self-esteem, motivation, and
Eastern philosophies and religions. He combines the insight he's gained from

studies with practical business experience to shed light on some age-old
problems of human behavior. He is the author of 

Maximum Self-Esteem: The Handbook For Reclaiming Your Sense of Self-Worth,


52 Things You Can Do To Raise Your Self-Esteem.

He can be reached at 

arnford at townsqr.com

This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript
enabled to view it. .




Blessings to you in the name of Jesus Christ 

"Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not into thine own
understanding.  In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy
paths." Proverbs #3#5-6

My book is now available in audiobook format:

 <http://www.theresmorethanoneway.com/> www.TheresMoreThanOneWay.com

Visit my new website at 



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