In order to be our most productive, we may need to have the courage to ask for help. Gone are the days that asking for help was considered a weakness.
In January 2015, the musical Hamilton opened on Broadway and was an instant success winning both Tony and Grammy awards (at the time of writing this it was also nominated for an Academy Award).
Lin-Manual Miranda, inspired by Ron Chernow’s biography of Alexander Hamilton, one of the USA’s founding fathers, was the genius behind the show.
On July 6, 2020 a movie version was released on Disney+, which is how I came to see this show and on that night, in the middle of a pandemic, I was utterly hooked. The soundtrack has been on repeat in our household ever since.
My favourite song is “Right hand man” which introduces George Washington to the story. I gets me head banging and steering wheel slapping every single time.
We are out gunned, out manned
Outnumbered out planned
We gotta make an all-out stand
Yo, I’m gonna need a right-hand man.
Later in the song George goes on to say, “I can’t be everywhere at once people!” as he is trying to manage poor resources from Congress, a rag tag militia, his own property at Mt Vernon all whilst running a revolution! He realises that unless he gets some real help, he doesn’t have the capacity to manage, and win the war. So, Alexander Hamilton becomes his right-hand man.
Many of us try and soldier on (pardon the pun) despite knowing we are “out gunned”. We try to do everything, we put on a brave face, we fall into bed exhausted at night only to hit the treadmill again in the morning. It’s a never-ending cycle of overwhelm and lack of control and the worst is . . . often we don’t know where to even start to make things better.
Without help, George Washington would not have had the headspace to think strategically. He would not have had the capacity to make the right decisions at the critical times to take advantage of opportunities that presented themselves.
The first 3 things we need to do when we are wanting to take back control is to:
- Stop, pause and breathe
- Take stock of what needs to be done and by when
- Decide (a) what absolutely must be done, and (b) whether it’s you or someone else that can do it.
How good are you at asking for help when you have hit your capacity wall? Who could you reach out to right now for help?