Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Be strong: ask for help!

When I started the business, initially as a nanny school, I started from scratch... just a few hasty notes of what I wanted to do and then I set about getting organised,  finding premises to use, secondhand equipment, finding teachers and advertising for students.  Providing quality training and economic survival were my only goals and the latter was a long, hard struggle.  I really didn't know what I was doing from a business point of view but somehow it has grown and evolved to today's well-established nanny agency. As I look back, I wonder why I didn't ask for help, but I think the answer is that I wasn't sure what help I needed and where to find it.

We all have times when it feels as if everything is on top of us.  It might be business worries, or it might be a crying baby, sick or fighting children, a close relationship that doesn't seem as close and supportive anymore, the death of someone we love...these, and others, are all issues we have to deal with, sometimes all at once, and it is perfectly normal and acceptable to ask for help.

Identifying when you need help:
  • Having a sense of not coping, not being in control of life, spending sleepless nights worrying, letting everyday tasks, and even personal care, slide;
  • Feeling constantly tired, short-tempered, frustrated, angry;
  • Losing a sense of humour and of enjoyment of life;
  • Avoiding people.
Barriers to getting help:
  • All the above feelings can make asking for help just seem like one more thing you should do, but can't find the energy;
  • Pride and concern about what other people (partners, parents, children, colleagues, friends, the lady down the street) will think if they knew you weren't coping.;
  • Guilt about not coping when "everyone else is managing their job/family/relationship/life";
  • Concern about how much help might cost;
  • Not knowing what help is available and where to find it;
  • Being so overwhelmed that you can't even work out what would help.
Asking for help may be as simple as letting a friend or colleague know that everything is 'too hard' at the moment, or it may involve talking to someone a bit less involved like your Maternal and Child Health nurse, your doctor or approaching one of the many community agencies that offer support and counselling.

Help can come in many forms:

  • Practical, including childcare, household help, financial support, transport assistance
  • Personal, including counselling, friendship and support groups, a listening ear
  • Information, including the wide variety of services available to assist with particular difficulties, 
  • Professional, including medical and mental health services; early intervention services for children; legal assistance.
Asking for help and accepting help when it is offered can be difficult, but it is STRONG to ask and to accept it when it is offered.  It is in fact, the first step to getting back on top of the situation that has been getting you down.

There are a great many resources available in our community.  Doctors, Maternal and Child Health nurses, Community Services are all good starting points.

Lifeline: Phone 13 11 14
Maternal and Child Health Line (in Victoria, Australia) 13 22 29
Raising Children's Network General guide to services with information and links for all Australian states.


No comments:

Post a Comment