8 Reasons People Reject Help When They Need it the Most

8 Reasons People Reject Help When They Need it the Most

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Do you often reject help, even when you need it more than anything? As a strong person, it’s hard to feel like you can’t accomplish things, and it does something to your self-worth and respect when you need assistance. However, accepting help from a friend, loved one, or coworker is freeing.

You become stressed out when you pile your plate so high that you can’t get everything done. You want to be the superstar that can accomplish monumental tasks without anyone else, but you must remember that you’re only human. Everyone needs help from time to time, and it has nothing to do with weakness.

Introverts have a significant issue with asking for help. These folks are the do-it-yourself kind, and they might be quiet, but they have a strong sense of pride. If your default position is to turn inwards when you can’t get it all done, then it could be that you have introverted tendencies.

Eight Reasons People Reject Help

Whether you’re an introvert, extrovert, or a combination of the two doesn’t matter. You must learn to stop rejecting help and allow others to lighten your load for your sanity. It’s not going to harm your self-respect or destroy your sense of self-worth. Here are some common reasons why so many people decline help.

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1. People Reject Help Because They Fear Rejection

No one likes feeling rejected. Therefore, many folks are afraid that someone will refuse the request if they go out on a limb and ask someone to help them. Those little fears and voices inside your head will tell you that people won’t help you anyway, so what’s the point of asking. You should never fear that others will belittle you if you bring your issues to someone for help.

Sure, judgment is a straightforward form of rejection, but not everyone will refuse you. A true friend or someone that loves you will put their head together with you and try to find a way to get it done, even if they can’t assist.

2. You Don’t Want to Feel Like a Burden

You’re not the only person who can’t get it all done. You feel that accepting help from someone is only going to put them behind. Sure, there’s a self-respect issue too, but you don’t want to put anyone else out when they have such a busy schedule.

If you tend to be introverted or shy, being the center of attention is not your cup of tea. You don’t like to tell people about how you’re having problems and can’t get things done because you fear they will view you as weak or inferior. Well, get that negative self-talk right out of your mind. No one will view you as anything other than an average person who needs some assistance.

3. You Mentally Chastise Yourself

Sometimes, you feel like there’s no reason why you can’t get the things done you need to accomplish. You give yourself a mental talk about how you need to “get over it” and “just do it.” You need to stop telling yourself to toughen up and thinking that you’re not living up to your potential just because you need help.

Stop telling yourself that you should be able to do this when it’s probably more than anyone could accomplish. Sometimes you can’t just get over it and cope, and you need to be a man or woman enough to say, “I need help!”

4. You Don’t Want to Owe Anyone Anything

Remember the old saying that I’ll scratch yours if you scratch my back? Well, most people want something in return when they do something nice for you. They might put a hefty price tag on their services, which can insult your already injured esteem.

When someone does something nice for you, an outstanding debt lingers over your shoulders with some folks. Like any good bill collector, they will come and collect the debt when they need help. This is why choosing the right person is so important.

5. You Switch to Energy-Savings Mode

It can be downright overwhelming emotionally to realize you can’t do it all and need help. If you’re an introvert, you know that you turn inward when you feel troubled, so try to conserve your energy. You know how much it takes out of you when you need to recharge your batteries.

When you let your guard down long enough to say you need help, you know that you will have to explain things, answer the tons of questions the other party will have, and feel pressure on all sides. You would rather forgo this whole process, as it will do nothing but deplete your energy surplus. Just asking someone to assist you can be so overwhelming that you don’t want to put yourself through it.

reject help

6. You Reject Assistance Because You See It as Weakness

From birth, you heard how you must be tough to get anywhere. These destructive thought processes are even more detrimental for males whose parents believe crying shows emotional weakness. The result was a generation or two of people who didn’t know how to show emotions, including telling their children how much they loved them.

Yes, being resilient, self-reliant, and independent are all excellent qualities, but nowhere in the book of life does it say that you can’t ask for help. The first time you ask someone, your self-respect might take a hit, but it doesn’t make you appear weak. Thankfully, people are dropping this old thought process that being tough means you show no emotion, and men cannot express their feelings.

So, accept help if you need it. Just be man or woman enough to understand you have limits.

7. You Fear Losing Control of a Situation

According to counselor Lisa Ferentz, many people reject help because they’re afraid of losing control of a situation. Most people are overly self-reliant, so when you ask someone to give you a hand, you must let your guard down and become vulnerable.

Vulnerability is challenging for some people, as it creates awkwardness and exposure. Ferentz suggests that you have a list of “safe” people you go to in these times. You might have a big inner circle, but you can’t trust just everyone with your life and problems.

Who you turn to is just as important as the whole asking for help aspect. Some people would never make you feel worse than you already do, and some folks would take pleasure in watching you fail or wallow in defeat. However, never reject help when someone offers out of the kindness of their heart.

8. You Don’t Want to Become Dependent on Others

Past experiences often cloud your judgment when it comes to your needs. Perhaps you feel that by asking for help, you will become dependent on that help. Now, consider you’re moving to a new home.

Moving is a big chore where you will have no choice but to ask for help. You won’t become dependent on others by simply getting assistance in this situation. However, what if you can’t seem to catch up on laundry and housework, and you ask someone to step in? This situation you might view as different.

You’re afraid that asking for help will become a crutch you use when you feel like you’re overwhelmed. You certainly don’t want people to resent you, especially if you’re asking for help when you think that you should be able to do it alone. Accepting help doesn’t mean it will become a habit, but if it does, maybe it’s time to reevaluate some things.

In the instance of housework, it may be that you need to hire someone to come in and help when your to-do list is just overflowing. Some agencies make their mark on the world by helping people who don’t have time for certain things, like cleaning.

Don’t Reject Help–Learn How to Ask for Assistance the Right Way

M. Nora Klaver is an author who writes self-help books to encourage others. In her bestseller, Mayday!: Asking for Help in Times of Need, she says that people never feel comfortable asking for assistance because no one ever taught them how. There’s a proper way to go about such things, and if this were engrained in people from early on, it wouldn’t be such a big problem.

It shouldn’t attack your self-worth because you need help, nor should you use negative things like blackmail, guilt, or bullying to get assistance with something. Just as crucial as asking someone to help you is the person you choose to ask. Some people are more eager to help, while others wouldn’t have time to squeeze in another thing. Perhaps, you’ve felt embarrassed asking in the past, so you don’t want to go through that humiliation again.

reject help

Final Thoughts on Understanding the Reasons Why People Reject Help

Asking for help is never a bad thing, and it doesn’t make you less than someone else if you need assistance. While it’s good to have boundaries and limits in life, don’t hesitate to ask for help when you need a hand. You’re not being strong if you reject help, you’re just not being realistic.


Chris is a happy dad and co-creator here at PoP. Since 2009, Chris has experienced multiple life changing positive events, released over 100 pounds, attained inner peace, created academic and professional success, and learned to see increased abundance in every area of life, while remaining grateful and joyous through the journey. Chris has transformed from rock bottom in the areas of personal health, fitness, and spirituality. He credits it all to the power of positive thoughts, words, actions and reactions. In his spare time, Chris enjoys music, fitness, plant-based nutrition and inspiring others to take positive action steps and catch their own dreams in life. Chris also loves to spend quality time with his lovely wife Kristen and two beautiful daughters.

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