Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I Don't Need Your Help

This article was featured on Being Latino.

Well, at least didn’t think I did. I suppose you could say I’m prideful -- machismo, even. But I am not arrogant nor am I disrespectful. Part of the problem is that I don’t like to ask for help. I know I am fully capable of completing the task at hand on my own, but sometimes there’s just too much to do. The other part  of the issue is I couldn't recognize that people want to help because they want to see me succeed -- and being able to trust that someone else had my best interest at heart isn’t the easiest task.

When I started my business four years ago I made a couple major mistakes that limited my potential for growth; all because of my pride. The first one was when I decided against accepting money from investors. I didn’t want to have any pressure over my head of having to pay anyone back -- I also wasn’t sure I was even going to be able to. I didn’t understand the concept of spending someone else’s money before spending your own -- I wanted to do it my way with my money. The second mistake was in building my staff, and learning to delegate responsibilities. I didn’t want to inconvenience people that I really couldn’t financially afford to have working on my team. So I ran myself ragged trying to do it all myself.

The issues bled into my relationship. I am very adamant about keeping my personal life and my business separate, but I wasn’t demonstrating that very well. I became, and sometimes still am, one dimensional. My lady was only able to experience one facet of who I am, and since I was being consumed by my business, that is who she knew; and that's who she wanted to help. That led to many moments of frustration and even arguments concerning boundaries between our relationship and my business.

That was my biggest misconception.

She wasn’t trying to over step our relationship nor was she trying to take over what was mine. Her way of showing love and appreciation for me was to contribute to what she knew meant a lot to me. But I wasn’t open to accepting it; I wasn’t able to recognize what her love looked like. The same way I wasn’t open to investors; people who truly believed in me and wanted to help me succeed by providing much needed capitol. The same way I refused to delegate tasks to people who were more than willing and wanted to be a part of the company I created -- giving their time even when they knew there would be no financial compensation up front. But I couldn’t see that.

Pride can be blinding. In my case my pride was holding me back from receiving the blessings people wanted to give me. I was stuck in a state of mind where I was the only one that could do what needed to be done. I confined myself by believing there is only one way to complete a task; or only one way to show someone love. Machismo has gotten the best of me, but I’m learning to grow through it. I just keep reminding myself, “No one ever choked to death swallowing their pride.”

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