15 Ways to Help Without Getting in the Way
Helping done poorly is destructive.
The need to help says more about your needs than theirs.
3 UN-helpful reasons you feel the need to help:
- Feel important.
- Elevate status.
- Look smart.
6 unhelpful helpers:
- Hero helper. Rushes in to save the day like Super Man.
- Egotistical helper. Do it like I do it.
- Fixer helper. Now that you screwed up, I’ll fix it.
- Meddling helper. Loves to make minor improvements.
- Bleeding-heart helper. Loves to hold hands and look concerned.
- Savior helper. You’re incompetent or inadequate.
Effective help elevates the status of those being helped.
Helpful leaders are:
Handy but not hovering.
Aware but not interventionists.
Available but not anxious.
The 15 forms of help:
- Story sharing. “I remember when I did something like this.”
- Partnering. “Lets do this together.”
- Lending a hand. “I’ll do that.”
- Gratitude for effort. “I’m thankful for your work.”
- Acknowledgement of accomplishments. “You’ve made progress.”
- Suggestions. “Try this.”
- Confidence building. “You’re the right person for this job.”
- Perspective giving. “That doesn’t make sense.”
- Exploring options. “What else might work?”
- Listening. “Tell me what’s going on.’
- Cheering from the sidelines. “Way to go.”
- Providing connections with experts. “Who knows how?”
- Removing obstacles. “What’s in the way?”
- Clarifying purpose. “What’s important about this?”
- Empathy. “You look stressed.”
The 7 questions to ask before helping:
- Where’s the point of frustration?
- What have you tried?
- Would you like some help? Get permission to give help.
- What type of help would be helpful?
- What are your priorities?
- What are your goals?
- Where do you feel resistance?
Frustration and help:
- Moderate frustration sharpens focus and increases energy.
- Persistent frustration indicates it’s time to step in.
- Frustration while you’re helping indicates you’re not helping.
Reject relational dynamics where people come to you before giving it their best effort first.
What forms of UN-helpful help have you seen?
What are the best ways to help?