Whatever profession you may be in, there will be number of times when you are bound to get stuck. What do you do then? How do you ask for support without feeling vulnerable and coming across as someone who does not know his/her job? When do you ask for support? Right in the beginning when you are given a task that looks daunting or do you first thrash out the possible solutions in your head?
I use the food analogy to have you drool and feel good about getting stuck. Read on.
Reexamine your plate
Picture yourself at a party or wedding. Once the pleasantries are done with, you move towards the food section. What is your first action when you stand near the buffet table? Don’t you walk down the whole line to assess the spread and varieties of delicacies available? As you do that, your mind is making small notes of what to partake and what to miss. You are looking at the desserts and unconsciously counting the calories. You make a small note to taste, just a tiny morsel of that new dish that you had only so far heard of.
Now, how about reexamining the plate of your problems? Go through the issue at hand meticulously. Run the situation in your mind. Assess if you have looked at all solutions. Make notes of where things are really stuck. Prioritise and discard what is unimportant for the immediate solution.
Look at options
Continue on that food journey. Your mind is seizing options now. Should it be rice or biryani? Tandoori roti or butter nan? You ultimately settle for what you think is most tasty.
In a similar way, look at the options that you have in front of you. Make a list. Against each option right down the pros and cons. Be mindful as you jot down the options.
One of the most sinful, salivating dessert I have eaten is the baked boondi parfait. I can never resist it. Each time I eat it, I am awestruck with the combination of the ingredients. How well they blend in!
When stuck at a juncture, junk the usual standard thoughts and solutions that come to your mind. Think creatively and experiment with new solutions. But not always will you get an answer here. This is likely to make you feel vulnerable and you may hesitate to be innovative. That is natural. Take a pause.
You have just had the best of the meals. A fine dining experience. With a company that you enjoy. Now you want to go out and talk of this. Share this with a few of your close friends. Or blog about the good food. Or post a picture of that sexy dish on Instagram. But, I do not do nothing of that sort. My mind goes blank! I want to talk all about this but am literally done by now.
When you arrive at the last leg in this journey of yours you are likely to feel drained out. Your mind for the past few days, hours has been so focused on this problem that now you want out. This is the time to reach out. Talk to your peers. Share what’s in your mind. With a colleague, a mentor or a coach – seek support, validation, criticism and/or debate. Reach out to your superior. Show your ideas. Draw out the whole journey. Never mind you don’t have all the answers.
You will find that when you reach out, people are ready to help. When they see that you have thought of options and still feel stuck, they know you have tried your best. Remember, we all get stuck. And we all reach out for help and support. That’s what makes us who we are.
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