Why Give a Damn:

As I wrestle with a job I am constantly unqualified for and pursue “addressing the world’s greatest challenges,” I often feel like I am not up to the task. But I remember a story that 2011 Unreasonable Fellow Luis Duarte told me. And I suddenly feel that, perhaps, I am.

The author of this post, Teju Ravilochan, is co-founder and CEO of the Unreasonable Institute.

A boy and his father were walking through the woods together. They came across a large log, blocking their path. The boy turned to his father and said, “Do you think I can lift this log, Dad?” The father replied, “If you use all your strength, absolutely you can.” The boy rolled up his sleeves, bent his knees, and got his hands under the log. He locked his arms and heaved with every ounce of strength he had. But the log wouldn’t budge. He tried over and over again until at last, exhausted and breathless, he gave up.

Your strength isn’t held by you alone Tweet This Quote

He looked at his dad with disappointment and frustration and said, “You told me I could lift it!” His dad smiled and said gently, “I told you you could lift it if you used all your strength. You didn’t ask me for help.

So the boy asked his dad to help him and together, they lifted the log out of their path.

Your strength isn’t held by you alone, but also by the people who march alongside you. When you feel unequal to the task in front of you, perhaps it is simply because you aren’t using all your strength.

About the author

Teju Ravilochan

Teju Ravilochan

Teju is co-founder and CEO of the Unreasonable Institute. He is driven by the desire to live in a world where every human being can be the master of their own fate, unbound by the chains of poverty, oppression, or injustice.

  • Ann Wertz Garvin

    And that my friends is how it’s done.

  • Jonathan Van

    Great 30 second read!

  • Will Butler

    The best part is I’ve heard you tell this story before Teju. So when I read it this time, I processed it as if I could hear your voice and your were telling it to me again. Good way to start the day =).

  • Teju Ravilochan

    Anyone have any good stories of not believing something was possible until they asked for help? I love hearing about times when asking for help illuminates what is possible!

  • Teju Ravilochan

    That means a lot to me Ann. You know how much I respect your writing!

  • Teju Ravilochan

    That brings a smile to my face, Mr. Butler. 🙂

  • Teju Ravilochan

    I’m glad you liked it Jonathan!

  • Yes! I have a story… when I was trying to get my book published, I got turned down by 20+ literary agents. I had this wonderful group of women around me that would “talk me down off the ledge” after every rejection letter. They told me they believed in me & wouldn’t let me quit, even when I really didn’t think I could do it. So true ==> “Your strength isn’t held by you alone”

  • Love it. Was having this exact conversation with someone yesterday.

  • An eye opener! thanks Teju

  • What a great story from two incredible people, Teju and Luis. If ever you had a doubt in life that anything is possible, look to these two fine gentlemen as examples and inspirations!

  • Great post, Teju. I hope you’re doing well. Talking with you in the Bold house and learning about the Unreasonable Institute were highlights of this year for me. Thanks for dreaming big and inspiring the rest of us to do so as well. Life is so unreasonably cool, is it not? Happy New Year 🙂

  • Zrfshan Lb

    Great 30 seconds. Really needed this at this time with all the disappointment around.

  • Teju Ravilochan

    It was a great privilege for me to be at Bold and to meet you Morgan! 🙂 I definitely agree: life is so unreasonably cool. Happy New Year to you as well!

  • Teju Ravilochan

    Such a charmer, Scot. I need to spend more time around you.

  • Teju Ravilochan

    I’m sorry to hear that disappointment surrounds, but I’m glad you enjoyed this post. Wishing you well in 2014!

  • Pedro Santos

    Fantastic story, small and insightful. How small things can have a big impact. I’ll make sure to share this

  • Sharon Read

    Beautiful, Teju. Thank you!

  • barb

    for someone like me, who’s very reluctant to ask for help, THIS is something I need to remember more often!

  • barb

    so cool, sandy!

  • DrivenbySuccess

    You and I both! Wehn I read this I thought to myself “I did not see that message coming” I will always ask for help if I simply cannot do something. People should be telling this story dailiy!

  • Anthony Urbanski

    I don’t know If i would call this story good but it relates. As a freshman track athlete I had always said I wouldn’t do Cross Country because its simply to far, 8,000 meters to be exact. I was used to train for races of 400 and 800 meters so it was a big jump. With the encouragement from the coaches and teammates I decide to give cross country a shot my sophomore year. It sucked, everyday I hated practice I was always in the back of the pack. However my teammates had my back, they wouldn’t let me quit. Now as junior year I can look back and see that it was the best decision of my college career.

  • Frank_Stanek

    A deceptively simple lesson. I can easily admit that I have had to learn the hard way that asking for help can sometimes be the only way to succeed. My tendency to never ask for help when faced with a problem, whether major or mundane, is still a constant issue for me. Still I have been forced to learn that as you get older and the problems you encounter have more serious ramifications you sometimes have to swallow your pride and feel like a fool if you want to succeed.

  • Kendra Larson

    This story was a big eye opener for me. There are so many times when I get so overwhelmed with so many stressors and I try to figure out everything on my own. I rarely rely on help because I think that these are my problems and I have to deal with them myself. However, I am not alone and I don’t have to be on my own when times get hard. I have many people around me, that care for and love me that are here to help me out, in my times of distress. I know for a fact that I am not the only person that thinks this way. What motivated you to write this story? I want to thank you for sharing your words of wisdom.

  • AndreaBehling

    Thank you Luis Duarte for the story and thank you Teju Ravilochan for sharing it with all of us. The title says it all—this story is for anyone who’s feeling like a pebble in the ocean. I often have to remind myself that nothing I do singularly will even compare to the things I’m capable of with the help, support and inspiration from the people around me. I think that’s one of the fundamental concepts all great leaders have a good grasp on. The problems surrounding our world today don’t seem as big when you think of the people of the world collectively. We have great power in numbers—we should use that ability to do more good.

  • Guest

    This is a very insightful post, I am thankful for having the chance to read it. We are not taught that the definition of “strength” means to ask thy neighbor for help when
    needed. I plead guilty to forgetting that there is often strength in numbers. I was always told that “strength” is a power that comes from within, but it is so exciting to think of the possibilities when multiplying this inner power each of us have! Do you think that having a positive attitude is more beneficial to overcoming the feeling of inadequacy?

  • Alexandra Helena Marie Nicolof

    This is a very insightful post, I am thankful for having the
    chance to read it. We are not taught that the definition of “strength” means to ask thy neighbor for help when needed. I plead guilty to forgetting that there is often strength in numbers. I was always told that “strength” is a power that comes from within, but it is so exciting to think of the possibilities when multiplying this inner
    power each of us have! Do you think that having a positive attitude is more beneficial to overcoming inadequacy?

  • Sam Kuchenreuther

    Great story! I can relate a lot to this. Sometimes when I’m at college I want to completely take care of myself and not rely on my parents for anything. Like when it comes to money or food. I try to lift the log by myself you could say. This story shows me it’s okay to have someone help you. Even though I don’t like relying on them, I know that they will be there for me. Did you come up with this story or did you hear it some place else?

  • Jennifer Lynn

    This story is short but beautiful because people don’t always find strength in the things around them. I recently lost my grandmother and an uncle within the span of three weeks and it has obviously been a very difficult time. I am alone at school with no family but have found that even though they are 2 hours away I can find strength in them. We can all look at this post and think of a time when we thought we had absolutely no strength or determination left to carry on with our lives but if we look to those whom we love we can find the motivation we need to keep chugging along.
    I would challenge the author to look at this idea of strength and connect it to every hardship we face in life. Connections can be made even where we least expect it.

  • MeierKM23

    This is a great short story and has great meaning behind it. Sometimes asking someone for help and handling the problem yourself may sound like it would work but not always. When I was younger, in elementary/middle school, I was usually scared to ask the teacher questions because I thought they would think I was dumb or something. My parents would tell me don’t be afraid to ask questions and so I high school came and I knew if I ever had trouble or needed help on a problem, just ask for help and most of the time they did. This may sound like small example but after reading this, it reminded me that asking for help instead of just giving up is the better choice. Some things I agree need to be handled by yourself but I have learned, don’t ever be afraid to ask for help and know strength isn’t held by you alone. Thanks for sharing this Teju. Did something inspire you to write this or just hear it from someone?

  • Kait Harman

    This article really helps when anyone including myself is in a tough situation I will always think of what was said. It is not easy doing everything alone. In fact it is the most tough situations we have to go through alone but having people supporting you and giving you there strength to add to your own makes things different. It may not make it easier or make the situation go away but you have more strength than if you are standing alone. I do not not understand why people believe they need to go through things alone. What I do not understand even more than that is why people do not use other peoples listening ear or advice when offered? Use all the strength offered!

  • treehugger90

    I was 18 and I lost my job at a restaurant I was working at and I began to apply for jobs everywhere. I was at the point of giving up because 6 months went by. Then my boyfriends sister in law gave me a recommendation to the pharmacy she was working at. Soon after the pharmacy ended up calling me and I got the job! Now, 6 years later I am still at the pharmacy! 🙂

  • Jack Delabar

    Thanks for the inspirational story, Teju. It really illustrates the point that asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness. From a bull headed, stubborn man like myself, asking for help is a difficult thing for me to do, but I know that there are many different resources such as my friends, co workers, or neighbors that could help me with something that I am not sure about. “Strength” is a loosely used term in this story and I believe that I could accomplish nearly anything if I were to use all of mine. I would love to hear more stories of people who needed help besides the ones that replied to your comments. Do you have any??

  • LevenhagAL14

    I love this story. It’s a nice reminder to anyone who is stubborn, like myself, that sometimes it is important to ask others for help. Do you have any examples from your life where you wish you would have asked someone for help?

  • kristinwagner32

    This blog is so motivating yet so straight to the point, I absolutely love it. Many situations in life have taken me down paths were I felt alone and helpless but I have always found my family and friends there for support. I completely agree with you as taking strength from those who are apart of your life because they are there for a reason. Thank you for such a great blog!

  • Joseph


    Although this story was short it still had an amazing point to it. I hope one day when i have kids a situation comes up like this and i can tell my kids that “you’re strength isn’t held by you alone” I honestly love this quote.

    It shows explains how you don’t have to do everything by yourself. Thats why you have friends and family. When times get tough you know that they will always be there for you.

    Thanks for the story Teju, it was great.

  • Caitlin23

    I have a similar story to yours! I play college softball and a few years ago I never thought of even playing softball in general. It first I couldn’t grasp it and it was so frustrating but my teammates never gave up on me and now I’m a Junior and I wouldn’t trade my experience or my teammates for anything!. This is a short but sweet story with a big meaning that hits home to a lot of us. It really makes you think.

  • ZakFritz

    This post was short but one of the most true and effective posts I have ever read. I have had problems with this before in my life. I don’t know if it was because of my pride or I am just too stupid to ask for help with problems in my life. I have learned that everything you do is so much easier to do with friends and family by your side. Even just talking to people if you are having a problem can relieve so much unneeded stress that everyone feels almost everyday. If we just remember this everyone will be able to live happier and easier lives.

  • Jessica Walker

    This message can be helpful in so many situations in people’s lives. Sometimes people feel as if they need to accomplish a task by themselves, and they feel if they cannot do so, that they have failed. But it is important to realize that it is okay to ask for help sometimes. Can you think of a time where you were too stubborn to ask for help, but once you finally did, you wished you would have from the start?

  • Palecekb

    Teju, as short as this article was, the meaning goes on and on. I completely agree with the outlook of the story. I can admit I rarely ask for help because so many times in my life I have counted on people who never come through with their promises. I have given up on asking for help. I exhaust myself in trying to handle everything myself. I need to learn and trust to ask for help again. This has helped me see the difference it can make in simply asking for help. Do you have any suggestions to help me ease back into trusting those who say they will help?

  • Austin Dorman

    This was a quick read, but a very inspiring and great read. I am a person who tends to be almost too prideful, and using this idea can be hard for me. I’m usually that last person to ask someone for help. How would you encourage someone like myself, someone with too much pride, to step away from that idea and use the resources others around them have to offer?

  • katie yanke

    Teju, Thanks for story it was short and to the point. In today’s world everyone seems to be focused on accomoleshing tasks on their own forgetting that they have the support and knowledge of their friends and family. Learning from other peoples past mistakes or experiences sometimes ends up being the most helpful. People need to understand it is okay to ask for help and that just because they cannot do something alone does not mean that they failed. Thanks!

  • Jansscor16

    A very simple story with a lot of meaning. Not only is it important to ask for help, but I feel this story has a little more meaning. We also have to be available to help people as well. The boys father was there, waiting to help his son. There are many stories below where we have asked for help, but are there any stories of where you were there to help someone?

  • Zach Stockheimer

    It is always good to look back at a story like this and remember how important you are to yourself and those around you. It truly makes you think about different ways that you can solve a problem, and how to utilize everything and everyone to help you reach your goals.

  • Evan Hibbs

    Mr. Ravilochan, thank you for the article. I agree that without support and help no task can be accomplished. I believe that many times people don’t use the support they have and try to accomplish tasks on their own, or they search for the wrong people to help them. If you were the boy would you have attempted to life the log on your own from the start?

  • layj

    A short but inspiring story! Sometimes when we are too focus on our problems, we often forget that we don’t live in this world alone. Thank you Teju, for reminding us about this. It’s always good to remember that family and friends are there for many reasons, and one of those reasons is to help with mental support. They can be our motivation, and even inspiration.

  • Trevor Boyle

    Being as independent as I am and have been from such a young age this really hit home. I tend to think I can do anything on my own, but in reality I wouldn’t be where I’m at right now without my support system in my friends and family. This story really shows you that being vulnerable and asking for help isn’t a sign of weakness but a sign of being resourceful and can help make your dream become a reality. Do you have a story that you can relate to this one?

  • Trevor Boyle

    Just this past year I was at an all time low in my life. I was having a bit of legal problems and just really thought that by shutting of the world that I could handle everything on my own. It wasn’t until I meet my trainer and counselor that I realized I need help. She helped me with my anger problems and really made me a better person in ways I never thought were possible. she forced me to put myself at a higher quality and stop settling for anything less that quality. I owe a lot to this women if it wasn’t for her I don’t know where I’d be at right now.

  • Jessica Mendoza

    Teju Ravilochan,

    LOVE this article! I am sad to say that I don’t have a specific story of not believing something was possible until asked for help. But, I do have something that is pretty relatable. I was apart of a competitive cheerleading team for 10 years. Being the independent girl that I am, this team really taught me that team work is key to a lot of success. I learned that you have to be able to communicate with others, work well with others, be helpful to others, and also be able to accept help from others in order to be successful in this large world. Like you said “Your strength isn’t held alone, but also by the people who march a long side from you.” You may think your powerful as an individual, but imagine how much more powerful you can be with people by your side. This blog really got me thinking! Thank you!

    -Jessica Mendoza

  • strakaJA01

    I feel that this story is really applicable to people that call themselves leaders. I say this because in my experiences, a lot of leaders have trouble asking people for help. Not because it is “literally” hard to ask, but because it becomes an issue of pride and looking weak to others. I myself am sometimes guilty of this because I am such an independent person. I think a true leader is someone that can ask for the help of others. I strive to do this as a leader because I know it will help me and others out in the process. People need to realize that they are never alone. I would ask you, Teju, do you find yourself including others as you lead? If yes, is it easy?

  • tjbaumeister08

    Thank you for sharing this story. There are many times when I feel overwhelmed and that I have too much on my plate. It stresses me out and makes me worry that I will never get through it. It would probably be a lot less stressful and overwhelming though if I just asked someone for help, but I’m the kind of person who doesn’t like to ask for help. I feel like I’m a burden or a hassle sometimes if I ask for help. Are you also the type of person who doesn’t like to ask for help or do you not have a problem asking?

  • stangleram13

    Thank you, Teju Ravilochan, for insight. This is one the
    shorter post but one the better one I seen. I do agree it is not the thing you
    can do it about other that help you along the way. This is a useful post for me
    because sometime I don’t ask for help I should. Would you ask for help you absolutely know that you get the task? Thank you for the post.

  • Tkachukme11

    My sophomore year of college, my family was facing many difficulties. My aunt had just passed away and my mom and dad were both facing health problems. It was very difficult being away from them so sometimes I did not realize the severity of things back home. My mom had to go undergo a surgery one weekend and I was waiting to receive a call from her to make sure it all went okay. Right before one of my basketball games she called and told me that she flat-lined for 19 seconds during her surgery but that everything went alright. I was very thankful the surgery was a success but it hit me hard that for that amount of time she was not alright. Soon after that my dad was diagnosed with breast cancer. My basketball teammates and friends could all tell I was struggling and I knew I had to do something to help my family. I made the decision to stop playing so I could work and make money to start supporting myself and not have my parents worry about paying my bills and their health bills. This is when I realized I wasn’t using all of my strength. I would put on a face showing that I am, but my friends knew deep down I was hurting. They decided to put together a fundraiser for our family and help raise money at one of the home games. This was a very moving moment in my life and has helped me realize that I need to lean on my friends more. Since that day, my roommates who I played basketball with back in the day have been the people I go to for everything. Without them, I would not be able to have found myself in these four years of my life. They will continue to support me in every aspect of life and could not be more thankful for the strength they have given me.

  • Kyle Schiedemeyer

    Awesome article! This story is going to help me a lot. In college I usually never ask questions in class and get disappointed when I do not understand something. I know if I ask questions it may come easier, but this story definitely helps me realize that if I want to reach my full strength/potential I am going to need help along the way. I agree the quote about your strength isn’t held by you alone. If I could ask Teju Ravilochan a question it would be, what is an actual experience of yours where you used this story to help yourself get back on track?

  • Taylor Schulz

    In October, I started an international cheerleading team. Although I had cheered before, I had never been apart of such a talented group of people. Being around so many great athletes, somehow, made me doubt my own self. I felt as though I did not compare to them and that I would never be able to measure up to such great talent. I was trying very hard at practices, but I still felt a bit overshadowed by everyone else. Slowly I was getting frustrated with myself because new skills were not coming as easily and quickly to me as they were to other members of the team. I was getting to a point where I thought I would never feel as good as some of my teammates until one day, it all clicked in my head. Being on a TEAM is not about the individual; it is about the entire team. After all, you cannot win a competition with just half of a team or an individual alone. After realizing this, I felt so much better. Although I wasn’t learning things as quickly as the others, being around such talented people was really helping me improve little by little all of the time. So relating to this article, I really do believe that your strength isn’t held by you alone. Thanks for a great article! It really hit close to home for me!

  • GraceFelion

    Wonderful story. It not only reminds us to ask for help but to think outside the box when facing a problem. We are never alone. It may seem like it at times but there will always be someone who cares about you. When have you needed to ask for help?

  • kalscheuar30

    Great article! I feel that a lot of people try to be self-sufficient, at least I do. Sometimes I feel weak for asking people for help, but this is a good reminder that maybe doing things by completely by myself might not be the best route. But on the flip side, it does feel more accomplishing when you’ve succeed in something by yourself. Like for me, when I make music, it’s fun collaborating with other people. Sometimes they can also provide something that I can’t, or I can’t do as well, but it’s also the biggest complement when someone likes something I’ve done with out anybody’s help. I see both sides. Help can be great, but also be more rewarding accomplishing things by yourself.

  • barczakdm08

    Great story! This is so true, people are stronger in numbers. Having a helping hand can make a world of difference, it seems like people these days would rather do things on their own rather then asking for help or working with others. This story is a great example of how much of a difference one person can be.

  • sarahbrooks

    you for your article! Could not agree more with you when you say,
    strength isn’t held by you alone, but also by the people who march
    alongside you.” I know that many people are afraid to ask for help
    because they think that it is a sign of weakness. But the truth is,
    use the people around you! We are not all the same. Some people are
    stronger physically and others are more knowledgeable. It is very
    important to use our resources throughout life, and people need to
    know that it is OK to ask for help! Do you agree that “help” is
    linked to “weakness” and that is why people try to do everything

  • Matthew Gust

    Thank you Mr. Ravilochan. This article really hit home for me. For so long I thought that I needed to be able to carry all my burdens all by myself. Just last year I was at a point in my life where I wasn’t making the right choices and putting myself into difficult situations. With this all still going on I was on the football team for the school I go to. In the spring I suffered two injuries that set me back quite a bit. The injuries along with all the poor choices led me to a pretty low place. It led to eventually me quitting the team to get the rest of my life straightened out. With me being the stubborn person I am I thought I could do it all myself. Couldn’t believe how wrong I was. My best friend reached out to me knowing that I was struggling and introduced me to a student organization on campus where now I call them my best friends. The organization was Fellowship of Christian Athletes. I must say my life has turned on a dime. All because God put the right people in my life to put me back on the right path. Thank you for sharing this story. There is always strength in numbers!

  • Ryan Repta

    This is a wonderful short story with much meaning. Many people, including myself, are often reluctant to ask for help in certain situations. Sometimes a helping hand is the best thing for a person in a situation. Do you often find yourself being stubborn to assistance from another individual?

  • weidmankl15

    The end of my senior year of high school, I started using an app called My Fitness Pal. I used this as a tool to help myself get into shape and lose weight. Thing is, my stepdad if a Natural Body Builder and I never wanted to ask him for help because I was embarrassed. I lost some weight with the app but it wasn’t until I finally asked him for help that I gained the knowledge, strength, and support that I needed to achieve my personal goal. It’s because of him that I lost as much weight as I did. It is so true that “Your strength isn’t held by you alone, but also by the people that march alongside you.” There was only so much that I could do on my own, and I wish I would have asked him earlier for help because his support, along with my own personal confidence, made me the person that I am today!

  • Haley Horn

    I LOVE THIS SHORT STORY. It is so true. My friends and family are my support systems and I don’t think I could go through half of the things I do without their help or advice. People need to realize that it is okay to ask for help. It doesn’t make you a failure, and not everyone can do everything on their own. Thank you for sharing!! 🙂

  • Amy Rink

    Thank you for posting this! I love stories like these, they just make you know that no one is alone in life and that there are so many people who care about you and want to help you! With the help of others anything is possible! Having extra hands to help only makes us stronger, it doesn’t hinder us in anyway! What was an experience you had where you felt that achieving a goal wasn’t possible until you asked for help?

  • BartuchGR11

    This post will be really useful because when I am feeling inadequate or I know someone else is I will then tell them this story. For example I have a friend who is training for a marathon and the next time she is feeling down or inadequate to accomplish her goal. I will tell her this story and let her know and let her know if she uses all her strength around her she will be able to run the marathon. I do agree that your strength is not held alone and you need to use the other strengths around you and your own strength.

  • Luke Drumel

    This article is truly heart warming to say the least and is helpful to always remind myself that I am not alone whenever things get tough and I don’t have enough strength. When was there a time when you thought believing something wasn’t possible till you asked for help?

  • What a story! This is so very true. Teamwork is as important as individual work. One cannot be sufficient without the other. We don’t encourage and value much unity and teamwork in our culture. If we ask for help, we seem weak. But that’s the problem! Some work simply needs a team to be accomplished. I think we need to learn how to let go of those insecurities and begin to emerge into a society of oneness. Thank you so much for sharing!

  • mhansen11

    Dear Teju, Thank you so much for this article! I really really enjoyed it! You yourself can do so much in life, but with the power of two or more, anything can be accomplished. You need those people to be in your life not to just walk with you, but act with you and get done what can be done! I would ask the question of how do you know who can truly be there for you when you need it most? Feeling inadequate is easy, but overcoming it is hard and you need people in your life to be there for you. Thank you again!

  • Daniel Preuss

    This post was very inspiring to me. Quick, easy, and effective read in 30 seconds. Nice job!

  • PKroening

    Thanks for sharing this! I really like the story told in this article for numerous reasons. I agree that when you cant complete a task you can always ask for someones help. My question would be when you can’t build up the courage to ask for help from someone what are some tips you could give for those people to swallow their pride and just ask?

  • PKroening

    I agree one hundred percent. When something cant be completed with one person numbers can always help.

  • Katie Ackerman

    Very short, yet so inspiring! I absolutely believe that your strength comes from not only you but the others surrounding you. I know that I am as strong as I am today because of the family I grew up with, and the friends I continue to surround myself with today. Do you find that you get your strength from your surroundings?

  • John Darrow

    Great article and thank you for sharing it. I come from what could be known as a “bullheaded” family, well my dads side anyways haha. There is often times I do not mind the way I do things because I do what works for me. However, sometimes my way is not always the correct path or the path cannot be taken alone because either its not meant to or, well, my tunnel vision can take over creating an ignorance towards asking for help. As I have aged though, asking for help has been easier for me and made many things easier along the way. I agree whole heartedly that our strength also lives in our peers because that strength is the bond created in friendship or love. great article.

  • GrycowskAJ17

    This quote is one of the greatest I’ve seen in a long time.
    “Your strength isn’t held by you alone, but also by the people who march alongside you. When you feel unequal to the task in front of you, perhaps it is simply because you aren’t using all your strength.” I will definitely be sharing is with people.

  • amykahl8

    This is so true! So many people are afraid to ask for help because they have too much pride or something. I think there is no shame in asking for help as long as you are pulling your weight. Do you think there is such a thing as having too much help though?

  • Joseph

    Near the end of my senior year of high school. I was so confused and scared about what was going on with my future. I had no intention of going to college cause honestly I didn’t think i was going to get in. I would basically cry myself to sleep every night because i was terrified of what was next. I never talked to anyone about it, just bottled it up inside of me. Well one day I couldn’t hold it in anymore. My gym teacher and I were pretty close and he could tell there was something wrong with me. After class he asked what was wrong with me. I exploded with emotion. I told him that i had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, didn’t think I could get into college, I just let everything go. He told me thats exactly how he was. He told me to become a P.E major because he knew I loved working with kids and he knew that I would be able to do it. Thats exactly what I am doing today. Went to small college before transferring to UW Whitewater. Becoming a P.E major. Honestly can not wait until I am teaching in schools. Its all because of my teacher and finally being able to open up about my feelings.

  • Keeli Gilbert

    Wow, I really needed his article. I needed to open my eyes to know that I am not alone and that I do need to ask for help and even though I may think it is a sign of weakness, it actually is not and there are loads of people that are willing to help as much as they can, even if you don’t even know them.
    I think that I am stronger then I am and that I can do everything on my own, I get it from my mother, but I know that if I use all my strength and all of the strength of others we can get done much more than I could ever by myself. Cannot wait to share this with my mother. She will love it!

  • masterdan55

    This was a great article. It was very inspiring and made me think of easy it is to get out of tough obstacles with just a little help. Sometimes its good to think outside the box and use all your strength like you said. You can relate this to school if you need extra help in a class. Its best to find someone who can help you so you can use all your strength and get that “A” you want. Is there any other ways you can help empower yourself in a situation as such?

  • clemonsel02

    As I was reading this story, I honestly did not expect the ending and maybe that is what people need to remember. I think that people need to realize that life is not meant to just go at alone. I feel like strength in numbers really does help. I think this would help out everyone to remember, that you are never truly alone and that when you can not do something on your own remember you have so many others to keep you up. This I feel the most when I got to college and joined a sorority and found that when I was struggling with class, family and work. They were there to keep me going. I was wondering if you had a group that helped you through a hard time?

  • clemonsel02

    As I was reading this story, I honestly did not expect the ending and maybe that is what people need to remember. I think that people need to realize that life is not meant to just go at alone. I feel like strength in numbers really does help. I think this would help out everyone to remember, that you are never truly alone and that when you can not do something on your own remember you have so many others to keep you up. This I feel the most when I got to college and joined a sorority and found that when I was struggling with class, family and work. They were there to keep me going. I was wondering if you had a group that helped you through a hard time?

  • Tim Rutkowski

    This article is simply awesome, I love the inspiration and creativity this article has given me. I feel more motivated to think of new ways to improve my life as well as others. I’m curious as to where it is that you found this story?

  • Jen McKiernan

    I am really glad I came across this post. I am currently getting ready for nationals with my gymnastics team and this story relates so well. When one of us has a bad day we rely on each other to pick us back up. I would never be able to accomplish half as much as I do now without my team as my support system. This story is a great reminder that having someone to lean on is never a bad thing.

  • Tammy Hartmann

    Teju, Thank you. I love the short and sweet story you shared. Iespecially agreed with this quote, “Your strength isn’t held by you alone, but also by the people who march alongside you.” I often asked myself, how do good leaders thrive? One answer to this is found in that quote: STRENGTH. This is so true. In my personal journey, and my projects, I have seen this happen often. Pride is not a healthy way to live!
    Strength can come in many formats, even as small and simple as talking
    with children. When my children misbehave, sometimes I run out of ideas for
    negotiating with them without nagging them, so I ask them for their input. It’s
    amazing to see how many ideas they have. It definitely takes the burden off my
    shoulders, and helps me build a better relationship with my kids.

  • Ashley Nicole Rietbrock

    Thank you, Teju for sharing this story with us I really enjoyed it. I really like when you said, “strength isn’t held by you alone, but also by the people who march alongside you.” I like to do things by myself and feel like I get more things done when I do it be myself. However since I been in college I realize that it is ok to ask for help when I need it. My parents, friends, and family I always there for me when I am having a bad day and need some encouragement. Such as, this one time I was feeling really down and didn’t feel like I was in the right field anymore and after talking to my mom and helping me realize that I was in the field. The people that you put yourself around can make you stronger and give you the strength and encouragement when you need. This story showed it and hit home for me a little bit. Thank you again for sharing this article I really enjoyed it.

  • Zach Perkins

    This article gives really great advice regarding help that many of us ignore. I have only recently discovered this, and think it is vital for us reaching our goals. I think people often get frustrated because they think they are in this world alone. Why do people often not look for help, when it can be so beneficial to their goals and successes?

  • Josh Pritchard

    I believe that others around you help keep you strong as well. You learn everything from family and friends so I completely agree with you. This was a great article! Great read!

  • DrivenbySuccess

    Wow this story just made my day. People need to really hear this and understand this if they plan on reaching higher plains in their lives. I ask my dad for help often and he is extremely willing to help me because I ask. He gets mad when I need help and don’t ask because he is my strength. This article should help a ton of people get through some hard times.

  • jkailing

    I like this story a lot. I think that it is very important
    to remember that you don’t have to do everything by yourself, and that it is ok
    for you to ask for help sometimes. When you ask people for help it not only
    makes the task easier for you, but you gain knowledge, and experience while
    doing it also. I know that sometimes its hard for people to ask for help
    because they think its bothersome or they don’t feel comfortable asking, but I know
    when people ask me for help that I don’t mind it at all. One question I would
    ask the author is why do you think it’s so hard for people to ask for help
    sometimes? Is it cause they think they’re too big to ask for help?

  • WolfgramKA06

    This is a great story. Most of the time, when I am assigned group projects, I like to get as much done by myself because I sometimes do not like to rely on other classmates. I realized the hard way, that by not allowing other people to help me, i can do poorly and not achieve my optimal grade. Who in your life “strengthens” you the most?”

  • AndreaBehling

    Thanks for sharing, Trevor. It takes a lot of strength to begin with just to admit you need help from others. I few months ago I interviewed a single mom from the Janesville area who goes above in beyond as a mother and leader in the community. I asked her, “How do you do it?” and her answer was that she’d never be able to do what she does if it weren’t for the help of her family, friends and neighbors. It’s definitely easier when you know you have support system around you that make you a better person.

  • AndreaBehling

    I’m glad you brought up the example of group projects. I’m that person, too. I say to myself “Instead of going through the hassle of working together, I’ll just do it myself.” What I really should have been thinking about was what every group member brought to the table and used their strengths to better complete the project. It would have made for a better finished project than what I could have completed myself, that’s for sure.

  • Trevor Boyle

    I’m actually from Janesville so that’s pretty inspiring to hear that from someone from my hometown. You defiantly need that external social support to help you achieve things in life. Not everything we do in life can come from within ourselves, sometimes we need to let our guard down and reach out for help sometimes. everyone could use a helping hand to get back on your feet just takes courage to do so.

  • pinsolera

    Yes, I have a story for you and it will be brief. When I was in my previous college, I was having massive trouble with Chemistry and I almost gave in to fail (never again). That was never my mindset, but I became so frustrated that I felt helpless and almost started to believe I would never make it out. I finally found a tutor that had the time to help and what a difference it made. My grade substantially improved and while I will never take Chemistry ever again, that moment taught me to never give up. When we ask for help, it can help rise you to higher heights.

  • Marian326

    I love this story! I am a firm believer in asking for help. My story is…I started back to college at the age of 49, and about that time I got hooked on Facebook. My Facebook friends have cheered me on during some very difficult times these past four years. I would not be 3 months away from graduation without the strength of my many friends. I believe that it is not what you know, but who you know, and the people in your life are your greatest resource.

  • Joseph

    I commented on this article a long time ago. Yet this 30 second story is always in my head. It is one of my favorite stories and it is such an inspiration. I always find myself coming back to this whenever im feeling down and read this for a little reassurance.

  • Caitlin Snyder

    I can relate to this! I also enjoy doing things by myself and I feel as if I’m the most productive when I get things done myself, but I’m a junior in college now and I’ve asked for help more times than I ever thought I would. I think you make your best friends in college and also learn to cherish your parents even more. The people you put around you are extremely important!

  • Ashley Nicole Rietbrock

    I agree with you about how you cherish your parents even more. When I was in high school I didn’t get along with my parents that well. However, know that I am in college I get along with them even better then before and I think going to college really help that out. I agree with the people you put yourself around are important because I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for my friends and family supporting me everyday.

  • LaurenSE

    I love this short but brilliant post. It is so true! You are capable of so much more when you reach out for support and help. I know I wouldn’t have been able to achieve half of the things in my life if it wasn’t for the help from my friends and family. I am blessed to have that support around me. Sometimes all you have to do is stop being so proud, learn to trust others, and ask for a helping hand. Do you have any advice for people that have trouble asking for help?

  • jmarch

    I love this story! My dad tries to teach me lessons like this all the time. It’s always the underlying meaning something with my dad. Thank you for sharing this it will helping me in believing today.

  • Joseph

    That is awesome that you talked to your dad about loosing weight. Sometimes asking people is your best resource. I find it hard to ask people for help all the time. When you finally work up the courage to ask someone for help the results you can get from people are unreal. Awesome story.

  • pinsolera

    That’s awesome to hear. I actually had a similar experience where things weren’t going as smoothly in school as I liked and felt frustrated. But, when I joined the Christian organization Cru, it turned me around for the better and I haven’t looked back. And like you said, I also falsely believed that I could make it through any issues without help from anyone. Was I ever wrong and I am happy that I was.

  • Zach Perkins

    That’s great! It’s those low times that teach you and build you up to a stronger person than ever before. Sometimes life will throw you tough challenges, but the key is to never give up and keep the end in sight.

  • AmandaBrom

    Thank you for the great story. I really feel this is something that everyone who should read. Asking for help is something that everyone feels differently about.Some of us refuse to ask for help because we have too much pride or think no one will be there. Sometimes you don’t have to look far to see a helping hand, its just taking the time to look. How often do you share this story now? This is a story I will remember when I am in need of some strength.

  • Zach Perkins

    I agree! This is a cool story that is a good reference from time to time. Asking for help when we need it is a great lesson and one that we forget. I read this story several weeks ago, but I still get great benefit in reading it again as I can reinforce this concept back into my life (until it becomes habitual).

  • Caitlin Snyder

    I’m so glad you agree with me! As much as we don’t get along with our friends and family, they made us who we are and we’ll continue to grow because of them!

  • Ashley Nicole Rietbrock

    Very true!! I don’t know if you have found this but get along a lot better with my friends here at college then I did back at home. Don’t give me wrong I still talk to my friends back at home and hang out with them. I guess the saying is true once you go to college you find out who your really friends are. I know that once I done with college that I will still talk to them all the time more then I do my high school friends.

  • Kendra Larson

    This is such a beneficial article for everyone to read. It relates to just about every one in the world. So many people have their doubts about certain possibilities. They think that they can not be accomplished, but with a little guidance you can succeed! I love how this article expresses how anything is possible and asking for help is okay! You are not on your own. Thank you for sharing this article!

  • Joseph

    that is a great story. Its awesome that you have gone back to school. Congrats to you!!!

  • Marian326

    Thank you Joseph. It has been an awesome journey and I am blessed to have had the opportunity to learn so much. School has taught me many things outside the classroom as well. I sit here on a sunny Sunday morning blessed to know that in less than three weeks I will have fulfilled a life long desire of earning a college degree! It feels amazing!

  • Marian326

    T, bless your heart! Your parents are blessed to have such a caring child. You are blessed to have such wonderful friends.

  • pinsolera

    And that is exactly right. Ultimately, life will never stop throwing wrenches at any of us until we die. It is a fact we all know. But, if we continue to push the doubt and negativity away, we can continue to make our dreams possible with whatever is thrown our way.

  • Caitlin Snyder

    That is very true! I recently got in touch with some of my best friends from high school, and although nothing really had changed, in the end I will end up spending time with my college friends after school is done. The friends that I’ve made in college are unforgettable. So it turns out that saying is true!

  • Joseph

    yes that is exactly what i like to do. I love coming back to this and reading it. Makes me realize that it is okay to ask help. you don’t have to do everything by yourself.

  • Matthew Gust

    I was amazed at how my life changed. Especially with my relationships. Before I had a relationship with Christ all my relationships were really superficial. Right now the depth of my relationships have grown so much!

  • stangleram13

    That is so moveing. thank you for shareing it will help me to never give up. thank you

  • stangleram13

    thanks for sharing. I do think that one person can come in you life and make a difference thank you

  • stangleram13

    thank you for sharing. I do think that you need a person that is in the inside to get a job but sometime not. thank you. ps I was in the place as you.

  • stangleram13

    I do agree on the little bit of guidance you can succeed. i also like this article too. love the this “you are not on your own.” thank you

  • stangleram13

    I do agree that perents have always a underlying meaning to something they say. thank you

  • stangleram13

    I like the example you give. That is to bad that you realized it to late. Now you can improve for next time. To ask for help thank you.

  • Tim Rutkowski

    Yes, when I went to basic training this past summer I didn’t think that I would be able to a set of 15 full length pull ups by the end of my training. My battle buddy pushed me threw it and helped me out to accomplish my goal.

  • stangleram13

    I agree with in the creativity. thank you

  • stangleram13

    I agree on the people are afraid to ask for help. thank you

  • stangleram13

    I agree with you on sharing this with people. thank you

  • stangleram13

    I do agree on the other around help keep you strong. thank you

  • DuCharmeDR11

    What a powerful article! Sometimes the best lessons one can learn in life are the simplest ones that we so easily tend to overlook. Utilizing resources and knowing that we were not designed to conquer on our own is an important step in anyone’s life. I would just like to challenge this point a little with warning to others not to read this and see it as a crutch or weapon to combat issues if one gets lazy.What is one way you designate roles so others don’t take advantage of this truth?

  • DuCharmeDR11

    This is such an encouraging story! I can relate to you on so many levels. It is funny how a few people in an organization can change your outlook on life. But breaking that down further, it really has nothing to do with those certain people at all, but allowing yourself to give up that internal struggle of trying to make all life decisions on your own. Knowing there is a bigger presence in your life, and that you don’t have to do things alone is step one to giving glory to God because it takes the emphasize off from your selfishness and puts him in power. It took me years and years to figure that out. But like you said, articles like this one are great reminders that we were not created to conquer everything on our own. We can and should turn to first God, then the ones that support us. Thanks Matt!

  • DuCharmeDR11

    Thank you for sharing a real life example of how this theory is alive and well today! We are not born to live our lives alone. Looking outwards at all the love and support we have all around us reassures us that together, we are powerful beyond measure. I love that quote and do believe it! How do you continue to encourage someone to believe this who has a similar story but “didn’t get the job” in your situation?

  • DuCharmeDR11

    I appreciate your point on how “asking for help is okay”. I feel as though we grow up in a society where independence, ingenuity, and innovation is stressed. We want to get to the top, and sometimes we forget that we don’t have all the answers or even best ideas for that matter. Articles like these give us a grounding to rethink our strategy to become powerful. What are some things you have not been able to accomplish alone, but found success in doing so with a group?

  • Murugi Kaniaru

    I love this story. Sometimes it’s so easy to isolate yourself and think you’re alone. It’s good to remember that even the most successful people didn’t get there on their own.

  • Mizu4TheWin

    Wow, this is really inspiring. I love these little stories so much, they just give me these big smiles. These are the stories that we should be telling children and even adults for that matter.

  • Natasha Tynczuk

    This is such a powerful article. As a college student, it is so easy to get stressed out and think to myself “I can’t do this.” But, when I look at all of the other people who have been in the same situation as me, it lifts my spirits. I know that I can always count on my friends, family, teachers, and advisers to help me and encourage me when I need it the most.

  • kyle055

    This is a very good reminder that we need to not be so narrow minded and think we can just handle it all. We need to remember to use the resources we have and when time needs, ask for help.

  • yencheskcj27

    This is a great quick article. It is always interesting to put into perspective how much more we can accomplish when we help each other out and play to our strengths. On another post on unreasonable, Mark Albion said, “To achieve more, we need others. [We} can do a lot more with 1% of 100 people’s work than 100% of one person.

  • mrmanuz

    This is a very good story to remember. It is never wrong to ask someone for help. In fact, asking for help is often the best option we have. We get a second opinion as well as the opportunity to finish our task.

  • Theresa Fitzsimmons

    Although very short, Thank you for this article; This story says it all. I have always been a very independent woman and I never want help from others. I hate feeling like a burden and I am stubborn to ask for help. This has hurt me by not asking others for help even though my friends would love to help me. One way in which this has hurt me has not just been in physical situations when I need help making dinner or lifting up something heavy, it has happened in emotional situations as well. One of my friends invited me over and asked me how I was doing since my father passed away. I said I was doing okay and we continued on with our drinking game that evening. We hadn’t seen each other in months and it was wonderful to finally catch up. We had some pretty hilarious stories and also a few serious talks. A few hours went by and I eventually had to use the ladies room. While in there I thought about when he asked how I was dealing with the loss of my father. I could not stop crying and eventually my friend came in the bathroom to see if I was okay. He picked me up and told me that I wasn’t alone. He explained that after knowing me for years he knew how I was, “always okay.” If I would have told my friend how I really felt and knew that he would be there for me I could have avoided breaking down. What advice should we give to those who don’s have others to help them?

  • Amanda Wood

    WOW! One good article after another.

    Your an amazing writter Teju! Thank you for these!

    As for this article, I could not agree more with the idea that your strength is not held by you alone. Humans are built to build off one another. Without other people, I don’t know what I would do. I am at my best with others around me and although I am myself..I am myself because of others impact on me and the way I have been brought up from my parents. Life is all about connections and relationships that really build who we are in the core.

  • LeiderGM20

    What a great quick story! Reminds me of my calculus 2 professor….he made every test and quiz a group test. I thought he was crazy, until I asked him one day why he did this. And he said because in the real world you will never be alone and can always ask others for help.

  • Ananda Conlon

    After being in a variety of student organizations, I have learned that an event will come together better with the help of a group of people. You could do it all on your own, but you are not using all of your resources. This doesn’t show inadequacy, it shows pride that you want to do the best job possible.

  • Alex Prailes

    This is awesome! I love this article because it makes me appreciate the people in my life. I think often we are too stubborn to ask for help, so we do things on our own. I think this is something so many people should realize, because it can help us all. We don’t have to always do things on our own, and it’s okay to ask for help.

  • hirthjp18

    This is a fantastic story, thank you. I struggle with realizing that I have people by my side that can help me and often get down on myself cause of it. Trying to accomplish everything by yourself is a good idea but we have to remember that the people supporting you will bring you further.

  • Abbey Stibbs

    I really liked reading this little story. It was inspiring. I have a story too that goes along with the message behind this article. This year I lost both of my grandparents, one in April and the other in May. I also lost my Aunt a few weeks back. This year has been harder than I could even begin to explain. Not only did I lose three family members in the span of six months, but my parents lost their house, and my dad was diagnosed with cancer. After all of this happened, I felt like the world was crashing down on me, like I was drowning, like I couldn’t catch a break, a breath of fresh air even. Throughout these past few months I have become extremely depressed and I have not been myself. I used to care so much about school, and I used to be proactive, but after all of this, I have lost all hope in everything. Luckily, these past couple of weeks have been better. My parents found a house to rent, and my dad’s cancer is curable. Although I am not able to bring back my family members, some things have been looking up in my life. And through all of this, I was not alone. When I was at my lowest point, I had several people to lean on, I was not alone.

  • Skowronssj06

    What a great and inspiring story! I feel like nowadays, people try to be so independent that they burnout. I try to be as independent as I can, but I always know that my family, friends and mentors are always there to help if I need it. I love the quote, “your strength isn’t held by you alone,” it is so powerful and everyone should read this simple story that has a lot of meaning behind it.

  • karinaz10

    Short and sweet but most certainly straight to the point. Great story! I have never thought of using all your strength in such a way, but it is true, ” your strength isn’t something held by you alone.” and like another article I read recently, you should not be afraid to ask for this help, help is a wonderful thing and it just might get you to where you want to be.

  • Luke Drumel

    What a great short heart warming story this is. It’s funny that we actually forget how strong we truly are when we least expect it. We have plenty of resources, support systems and forget they’ve ever existed, so the best advice I can give myself is to just to take a deep breath and remember that support has been and will continue to be on my side at all times.

  • Camillewuensch

    This is great! I know a lot of times at work I try and do everything that needs to get done and it’s very tiring. This story makes me see that I need to be using everyone around me to give me the best possible strengthen and help shorten my work load. I have been little by little to give more of my employee’s extra tasks that I would need to get done but they can still do. it frees my time up so much more!

  • Jcwilson480

    This has been the story of my life lately.this time last year I was failing all of my classes at ASU, I could not get a job and I was pretty down. My mom and dad talked with me about everything that was going on and the last thing he said was,” we’re behind you all the way. We’re all in buddy”. I still think of that now when things get rough.

  • leeana liska

    This story was very touching and the message is one that many people overlook when in tough situations. We think that our strength is determined by what we have the strength to get through. I’m sure many others can relate to this as well, but when in a tough situation, I don’t like asking for help, and want to be strong enough to do it by myself. Sometimes though, it’s OK to ask for help and be stronger as a team that by yourself.

  • leeana liska

    I can easily relate to your story! I too, only ran short distances and was persuaded to run cross country. I hated practices, always back of the pack, and I dreaded running in the meets. I didn’t start to enjoy it until I got closer with some of the people with the team that encouraged me to keep going. I didn’t think I’d be able to do another season but the team convinced me to go out for it again and keep running. The practices started to get more fun and running cross country in college is one of the best choices I’ve made.

  • gaulrappkj17

    I love this story. We like to think we can do things on our own and that we do not need help. We almost have a negative stigma for people who ask for help. It is sad, because truly we can not do everything on our own, and I believe it shows strength when we know we need help and take the initiative to ask for help.

  • Ashley Nicole Rietbrock

    Thank you for sharing this story little story that means so much. I found this to be a very inspirational story. I am a college student and like to so everything by myself. Then when I get to frustrated I just give up on it for a little while. Knowing that I could ask for help I don’t because I want to do it by myself. Along the way I have found that is okay to ask for help along the way it is how we get through life. There are people that are close that are there to help you along the way. People just need to know that they are there for them whenever they need them. I have learned that over the past couple of years at school. I have my people that I know with help me with whatever I need. Thank you again for sharing this article with us.

  • no

    That was the most useless piece of shit I have ever read in my entirely fucking life, and to top it off it makes me feel even worse about myself. Thanks.

  • catec18

    This story is a great little reminder to never give up. It also got me thinking to how many people would be hurt if I was to disappear. Those same people that are there to help you out in times of trouble are also the ones that would miss you when your gone. When you are thinking of giving up, think of those people. The people you would help and the people who would help you. Giving up on yourself and your goals also means giving up on others.

  • Jessica Peardon

    This story was very enlightening. I will definitely be thinking of this story on a daily basis. It is also a great story to share with someone when they feel like a failure. We need to learn to ask for help more.

  • Elaminsj25

    It’s funny how we sometimes develop a me against the world mentality. We are convinced that we have to do everything ourselves or that someone might view us a weak if we were to ask for help. If you are not utilizing the people around, you are definitely not maximizing your resources. I love this story! It’s okay to ask for help.

  • ClaytonEI08

    Loved it. I know a lot of people, myself included, who are so use to being self-sufficient that we tend to forget that it’s ok to lean on people sometimes. I know in my own life, I take a lot of pride in being able to say that “I did it on my own,” but the reality of any successful person, is that none of them did it alone. Your team is just as important, if not more important than the actual idea you guys share.

  • FalkinerRR23

    A lot of people are too stubborn to ask for help and just want to do it themselves even if they know that asking for help would make it so much easier and faster. This is a great article to show that asking for help really is the best idea and it doesn’t make you any less of a person.

  • milkienr18

    I really love this. I think it is so important to remember that you are not alone in this world and that you always have people around you to pick you up and help you through the rough times.

  • dwyerms07

    Great story to let people know that when face with a struggle to not face it alone but to ask other for help and assistance.

  • dwyerms07

    I agree with you that this story came from two incredible people who had a doubt in their life but eliminated that doubt with help from others.

  • dwyerms07

    this story was a great read and did not take long

  • barema28

    Wow awesome read! So many times people think that they can do it all on their own and don’t even think to ask for help. Love this. Will definitely remember this the next time I struggle.

  • Chris Glaser

    This story really illustrates how we shouldn’t be afraid to ask for help. This is something I usually struggle with, I like to take on a lot thinking that I can handle the responsibility, then when I get into a rut, I’m afraid to ask for help from my peers or don’t even think about it.


    This is such a cute little story that holds so much truth. I think many of us can relate to the little boy in that we try to face life’s obstacles alone in fear of looking weak, being a burden to others, etc. However, the truth of the matter is that we as humans are made for community and the need for other people. I, myself, have struggled a great deal with this concept, and it wasn’t until I finally reached a point in my life that leaning on the help of others was all I had left that I recognized how powerful it truly can be.

  • Chuck Triplett

    Sincerely appreciate these simple words of wisdom. I’m learning about stress management and realize how often I overlook the people and resources that surround me during these moments. Learning how to enable others to help is an essential skill in minimizing stress and maximizing success.

  • Jerry

    So true… learning the hard way that your strength is not so much in your ability to do things as much as it is to make sure things get done, was one of the key epiphanies in my early years as a leader. Forming a team of allies that complement and reinforce your own capacities can really lead to a group that is interdependent and powerful, and in my experience, this is the kind of team that can think big and believe in their ability to solve problems.

  • Katherine Noble-Goodman

    This is an inspirational story that I think applies both professionally and personally. On a personal level, it is easy when we are really struggling with something, as Trevor writers about below, to turn inward and suffer alone. I have experienced this with a challenging experience recently, and was like a breath of fresh air when I reached out and was immediately reminded that I was not alone in my circumstance. The help is always there; someone else has always experienced something similar. But on a professional level, particularly as a social entrepreneur, and with the daunting challenges many of us are working to solve, we simply cannot do it alone. We don’t have the “strength” to solve societal problems working alone, and these are collective problems that need to be solved by working with and relying on others. My guess is that those of us drawn to working in this field are people who by nature are self-reliant, so it is not necessarily natural for us to reach out for help when we need it. This story of the log in the trail is an excellent reminder of why we need to, and why we should.

  • Maria Alvarez

    This story truly magnifies the importance of collaboration and partnership for me. Just this summer I realized just how much I truly benefited from simply sharing in the presences of like minded people. It is fueling and also fosters accountability within a social venture.

  • Nikki

    I have asked for help but it goes unnoticed. People don’t have the time or resources.

  • Yaromil Olivares

    Absolutely beautiful story. The power of the collective will always uncover unimaginable solutions and gifts for us all.

  • Angelica Jackson

    In today’s world it is easy to want to do everything yourself to showcase how strong or how determined you are. But we all need help at some point wether it be today or tomorrow. We will always need help from someone. I can strongly say that those who do not ask or accept help from someone is a foolish person.

  • Nicole

    I have help. My mom helps with the kids, and I ask my husband for help all the time, but he doesn’t want to help, or will do it with an attitude.

  • Diana Ayton-Shenker

    Beautifully put, Yaro. Here’s to the power of the collective, unimaginable solutions, and gifts for all!

  • Diana Ayton-Shenker

    Don’t give up Nikki! You’re not alone. Keep asking til you get what you need. Sometimes “no” means “next”; and “not now” can mean “later.” Also, sometimes good to try new, clearer ways to ask, or better matched sources to approach.

  • Diana Ayton-Shenker

    Powerful benefits come from “sharing in the presence of like minded people”. So true!

  • Diana Ayton-Shenker

    So true, Angelica. You are a wise teacher!

  • faith strasser

    I found this article very inspiring and uplifting. As a college senior, I am about to be graduated and have to find myself in the real world. I often go through tough times of not feeling adequate enough to get a good job, or feeling confused and upset that I don’t know what I want to do. However, this article really hit home and made me realize that I can do anything that I think I can, as long as I have people by my side to lean on, which I know that I do. Therefore, I felt like this was a very good article that I am sure could speak to a lot of different people in many different ways. Sometimes we feel like we are trying to do everything all alone, but we really never are, and it is important to remember that always.

  • Gracia (East + Mia)

    First of all, thank you for sharing wisdom with us. This is the type of article you share with all your peers, the one you implore your closest friends to actually read in a sea of funny get-me-through-the-day memes, this article is an example of small words with big impact. Thank you for putting this gem out for all of us to read. I’m assessing my strength again, and telling everyone around me to count on me in their strength. This is referring to personal relationships. In professional relationships, this concept is so often forgotten that this article is a great reminder for the entrepreneurship community. In a material world, filled with “what do I want next?” it’s easy to lose sight of what would truly make people happy in their lives. It’s easy to lose motivation when goals are not attainable. That’s not to say goals shouldn’t be ambitious, but people’s goals should reflect their resources. A part of these resources are the people around them, and that is the key component that is so often forgotten. I think that people need to also be mindful of the people around them. Not everyone is going to be willing to help at our disposal. It’s important to get a clear commitment (with business) from people to avoid miscommunications and avoidable mistakes. Also, people need to make themselves available as others’ strength/resource in order to receive those positive vibes from the Universe. You can’t expect to receive and never give. Also a sometimes forgotten aspect of living authentically. Living authentically is such a priority in my life. I have people close to me that never build true relationships with people, they are always wondering when that person is going to act negatively towards them. Everyone is different and it is good to be cautious up to a certain point, to be aware that people may say “Yes, I’m on your team, consider me as a part of your strength team” but really they’re wondering at what point they can grab and go. I like to live more positively to attract more positivity.

  • Samuel Cannon

    I really enjoyed this post because of how much I can relate to this situation. It is very true that using help offered to you by others only increases your strength and ability. This is something people should keep in mind all the time and apply it to the aspects of their lives and how they conduct business every day.

  • Ann Matthews

    This article was exactly what I needed to read during my last finals week of my undergraduate career. I have been feeling extremely stressed and inadequate because I feel I cannot get done everything I need to on my own. This made me realize it’s okay to ask for help and that I don’t need to do it all on my own.

  • Jac Williamson

    I loved this story. It is so easy to get caught up in our own problems for all sorts of reasons. For me personally, I don’t like to burden people in asking for help. But, if someone reaches out to me asking for help or a favor, I feel like I can never say no because I want to always be there to help my friends, family, or teammates when they’re in need. Now that I sit back and reflect on how I’m willing to drop everything for those close to me, I know my loved ones would be willing to do the same. It’s always ok to ask for help, we all need it!

  • disqus_2WE5eZrg16

    This assumes that you have such a support system pre-established. That you have a supportive family, or genuine and caring friends, etc., etc. In other words, it assumes that you have a social, extroverted personality that allows you to make such connections. Meanwhile, those that aren’t as sociable or as good at talking or socializing are left out in the rain.

  • Zhou Wu

    That’s very encouraging! Thank you!

  • Zhou Wu

    That’s very encouraging! Thank you!

  • Bad2g4e

    Really Encouraging! Only a robot wouldn’t smile after reading this!