Sending Out An SOS
Sending Out an SOS Print from The Spotted Sparrow
It wasn’t too long ago I found myself facing a mountain of orders, a seemingly never ending to-do list, deadlines closing in, and dreams impatiently waiting to be chased. After a bit of chaos and running about, I realized it was time. Time to finally swallow some (misplaced) pride and ask for help.
This only brought more anxiety; who should I ask, perhaps they’ll reject the notion, it might mess everything up, and what kind of help do I really even need (maybe I just need a good friend to firmly shake my shoulders and yell “chill out!”). But, with pressures mounting and orders pouring in, I clearly needed something.
I took a bit of time to gain some calm and devise a strategy. First, I redefined my idea of help. It wasn’t a sign of weakness, but rather an indication of smartness. I then identified exactly which tasks needed support. (I know I had a tendency to delegate only the easy + simple things, which could actually just be wasting this valuable resource). Next, I brainstormed possible teammates for assistance; friends, family, husband, moms club, online network, business colleagues, etc. After putting the word out, I was met with a really encouraging response! So many folks expressed a genuine desire to support me on my ventures. They gave me new leads, shared ideas, and offered their time. Ultimately, I’ve created a dynamic network of people who support me with child care, fabric cutting, order preparation, design feedback, and even pep talks when I need it!
Of course, accepting help comes with great responsibility. There are relationships to guard and expectations to keep clear. It’s another aspect of my business I tend to with much care. It also has forged even stronger bonds and a sense of community I missed before.
My only regret is waiting so long to ask. Initially, there was a mix of pride, fear, and uncertainty keeping me from reaching out – thinking I could somehow do everything on my own. But, by just coordinating a bit of support, I’ve not only increased my productivity, but am enjoying newfound confidence and energy amidst all this encouragement.
What are your thoughts on asking for help with your business? Have you experienced setbacks or success with this? Is there anything that holds you back from reaching out?
Allisa is the dreamer and designer behind the Allisa Jacobs line of handbags and accessories. She delights in the process of making- sketch to finish and also has an ever-growing bridal collection. Allisa also shares her entrepreneurial insights in Rise and Shine, her ebook empowering others with their creative small businesses.