Become a Master at Asking For What You Want

Our endless needs and wants

  • Every day, we need/want the assistance of our family, friends, co-workers, and others we interact with:
    • Can you listen to this idea and give me feedback?
    • Could I get your advice on how to handle this?
    • Can we discuss my current workload?

The reasons people fail to ask

  • They don’t want to look stupid – ‘What if I ask something that is obvious, doesn’t make sense, or the other person thinks is ridiculous?’
  • They don’t want to be rejected – ‘What if they say no? They probably will, so why even ask?’
  • They assume people are mind readers – ‘They should be able to figure out that I need/want this. I’m dropping hints all over the place and they’re just ignoring them.’

The cost of not asking

  • You miss out on the wisdom of others
  • You allow amazing opportunities to pass you by
  • You take on more work than you can handle
  • You can become resentful
  • If you don’t ask, the answer will always be NO!

How to ask more effectively

  • Ask specifically – Explain exactly what you want, and when you want it (dropping hints to avoid ‘confrontation’ doesn’t work). Clarity leads to action, but a confused mind always says no’
  • Ask simply – A single, simple reason works best because it sounds more legitimate and authentic than a laundry list
  • Ask someone who can help you – Ask someone with the time, energy, resources, and experience to help you – don’t ask someone in the same situation (or worse) than you
  • Create value for the person you’re asking – Don’t just think about your needs/wants, but identify a benefit (a reason) for the other person to grant your request – how specifically will your request make a difference in their life?
  • Make sure the time is right – Avoid asking someone for help when they’re upset or overwhelmed – their frame of mind matters!
  • Ask with the focused, congruent belief – Be bold in the sense that you believe your request is reasonable/doable
  • Ask until you get what you want – Hearing No’ shouldn’t shock you – keep asking on different days, with different words and you’ll eventually get what you want

How to use this:

  1. Identify a specific want or need you currently have
  2. Use the suggestions that we’ve discussed to ask for it
  3. Keep asking, until you get what you want
  • As you go about your everyday life, have a mindset of always asking for what you want (big and small) and you’ll become more skilled at doing it – this is when doors will open to you where there were once only walls!

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