# 2 Challenge Ask A Stranger For Help

14. September 2017

I would like to tell you two things. First I do not only have a fear of rejection, I am also not very good in asking other for help, help for me personally. As weird as it is, professionally it works fine. Secondly I am going through a pretty tough time personally at the moment, having been disappointed by someone who meant the world to me, hurting and not being the cheerful self I usually am, making the challenge more difficult for me, but I still want to continue. This all has had an effect on my back and is the cause for quite some discomfort.

So I am going to start with something simple though and see what happens. I will ask someone at the supermarket to help me with my heavy shopping.

Sounds easy enough and I walk into the supermarket standing in front of a big box with 12 liters of milk (heavy stuff when your back hurts). I pluck up all my courage and ask the gentleman walking past me if he would be so kind and lift the heavy box into my trolley.  He does give me a slightly confused look but I quickly and truthfully explain that my back hurts and he immediately helps me. I can hardly believe how easy that was. I thanked him an gave him a big smile and he looked very pleased with himself.

I then walk to the mineral water. As I try to keep things sustainable I always take the (heavy) glass bottles. First crate of water and no one in sight. Thankfully a young man comes around the corner and again I dare to ask if he could help me. In this case he doesn’t even need a reason and simply grabs the crate and puts it in my trolley. Last but not least I get to the heaviest crate of water and I cannot believe my luck. Another young man shows up and I am now already finding it much easier to ask for help (I must admit I am pretty certain to get a yes). He is very friendly and my mission inside the supermarket is accomplished. I am rather proud of myself. But I know the tougher part is outside, especially as it is raining cats and dogs.

I even dare ask the young man at the check out if he would be willing to help me. He would have given me a yes but explained that he was not allowed to leave his work place and even apologized – so kind!

Once outside in the pouring rain, my actual challenge started. There were a few people in the car park but due to the weather they were all in a hurry to get out of the rain.

Nevertheless, and despite being soaking wet already I walked up to the first man, asking nicely if he could perhaps help me lift my heavy load into my car. I must admit that the horrified look on his face almost made me laugh. He probably thought I was completely mad. I didn’t even get the opportunity to explain why I was asking for help, he just walked away. That was rather discouraging. I tried not to take it personally. This is what I signed up for – rejection. Next I asked a young woman and she at least gave me the chance to explain myself before rejecting me with the excuse that she was in a hurry. Fair enough, she was at least polite. After two more or less polite rejections I must have either looked so pitiful, dripping wet as I was or he was just kind. I was very grateful and he really made my day.

There are true gentlemen out there. Sometimes we just have to ask!

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