If you don’t ask you don’t get. We know the saying well but often it’s easier said than done. For example, we could say to a partner ‘It makes me feel really good when you notice what I’ve done / say how nice the food is / comment on how smart I look etc so please can you try to do it more often?’ i.e. telling them what we like and asking for more of it. Instead we tend to feel resentful that our partner hasn’t noticed and feel unappreciated. In turn this can result in withdrawing or complaining, neither of which helps the relationship.
Similarly the tricky problem of asking for help, from anyone, not just partners, or rather not asking and then feeling grumpy that nobody offered or you are left struggling.
And it can also apply to asking for things from strangers or businesses. Instead of clearly asking for what we would ideally like we can get stuck in thinking such as ‘What will they think of me?’, ‘I might look stupid / greedy / desperate’, ‘I don’t want to be a pain’ etc.
However, often the absolute worst that can happen is that the other party says no. It’s often not really a big deal when you think about it .. apart from in our own heads! In the last week I’ve asked for a discount (granted), asked for a reconsideration on a no (granted) and asked for acknowledgement (granted). The reality is that if you DO ask, there’s a high chance you will actually get.
Asking doesn’t have to be pushy. You can do it nicely. You can do it acknowledging that it might put the other person out or be tricky for them. You can do it cheekily. It helps to do it with feeling and explain why you are asking. It doesn’t matter how you do it as long as you make it clear what you would ideally like and remember it isn’t a command, it’s a request. When you do that you’ll be amazed at how many times the other person is happy to oblige. Please like / share (did you see what I did there?!).