Asking

WELCOME
Welcome to this shitty place, join the club of We Who Have Made Our Deep Call For Help. You are not alone. I am no longer in that place, but I was, for years. Some people are trapped there for decades. Maybe you even know some of them, maybe they are hiding it well, like I used to, like perhaps you are now. Having been there, I’d like to say I’m sorry for how painful this is to your life, and for any ripple effect it’s causing to the people around you.

We have to begin gently. Before you run a marathon you need to stretch and warm up, because starting a long hard run immediately, from cold, can damage your body parts. It’s the same with your mind, with some of the things you’ll be facing here. I want to prepare you into thinking the right way about your asking for help. This chapter is an important step to take before you take your first step into the book, because the way you think about asking for help, and accepting help, might be the very things standing in the way of you actually opening to the kind of help you need. You may, without realizing it, be asking for help but also blocking your own efforts to find and accept help.

Let’s clear up your ‘asking’.

THANK YOU FOR ASKING
I want to thank you for asking. Asking Help Me Please may seem like a strange thing to be thanked for, but I am thanking you because you inspire me. To ask, means you still have strength, some iota of hope, whether you feel it or not, no matter how tough things have become for you. And I have so much respect, even amazement, at what people can withstand and survive and even thrive through. Life can become so hard; I pass people on the street, even simply the ‘normal’ people, and I have so much respect for you, just getting this far. Whether you’re ten or forty or eighty… man, just getting here, through whatever trials you’ve endured, good for you.

And if things have become this hard for you, yet you’re still alive and asking for help… just thank you for taking this next step. Most people have a variety of fears and guilt around asking for this deep help. To ask for a cup of coffee because you forgot your wallet, to ask someone to help you lift something heavy, this is normal stuff and doesn’t threaten your sense of your own strength, worthiness, ability, pride. But to ask for deep help…

…It can make you feel weak, a failure, it can feel like an assault on your vulnerable ego and pride, it can make you feel embarrassed and like you’ve lost control of your life, maybe like everyone around you is coping and has the answers and you don’t. This can be an especially impenetrable hurdle for those of you who may have lives that outwardly seem powerful and successful; because when people have looked up to you for a long time, depend on you for anything, consider you ‘a rock’, then when things start to fail for you it’s natural to try preserve your in-control life and your in-control outer face to the world, even while you’re feeling that, internally, everything is crumbling apart.

The reason I said ‘you inspire me’ is because I myself did not ask out loud. I was too confused by what I was going through, and too terrified of ‘losing face’ by admitting my falling-apart mind and life to anyone. I was always thought of as being on my way to fame, riches, success, by everyone around me, and for good reason because I was extremely talented and skilled from a young age. But when I began crumbling inside, I was dealing with entirely new thoughts and feelings. They were strange, out of control, completely unknown territory to me, and that was difficult enough without adding to it the unthinkable pressure of everyone around me actually knowing! So maybe you haven’t even asked anyone for help, maybe you’re asking on the internet because you’re afraid of anyone in your life finding out; here, it’s just you and the computer. And so many people around the world must unfortunately ask for help in a quiet, hidden way, especially if your family or society or government would leap on you, punish you, kill you, if they knew anything about why you are asking for help.

Still, you asked. No matter how you ask, whether you ask people openly or whether you ask quietly, alone on a computer, alone with a book… it takes courage to ask. Because it is admitting something to yourself, definitively and clearly. It is admitting a limitation and a reality, and those things are terrifying for many people to admit.

So I have to validate to you that you are doing this. It may seem like a small step, but it is incredibly large. Thank you for your courage. Everyone who asks, inspires me.

ASKING IS PROOF OF LIFE
And trust when I say this: if you can still ask, then you still have some will, some life, some spark inside you. If you ever reach that unfortunate stage where you don’t ask any more, don’t even feel like you want to be helped or delivered any more… well, I was taken to that extremity too, it’s a place where you’re beyond thinking that you can ever be helped again, beyond thinking there is anything left for you. At that stage you are beyond looking for or even accepting help, some other force must literally and physically save you because you are beyond being capable of saving yourself. It takes some small miracle, some happening you might never foresee arriving, to bring you back over to this side of the edge, where you start to feel some measure of hope again. The good news is that those tiny miracles are more common than people think. But that’s for another chapter.

Very few people ever quite reach that completely-lost stage, regardless of how much you feel you have. I know you are not there, because you are still asking for help, still reaching forth. Do you see the tremendous validation that ‘asking’ proves in your life? When you’re beyond asking, beyond even the tiniest act of asking like typing Help Me Please into a keyboard, then you’re totally gone.

But you asked! Even if that is all you have left, if everything else in your life has gone for shit and all you have left is that you asked those three words… you’ve still got that much of a spark left. And a spark is all we need, to start with.

And I’m trying to hear you, no matter how faint or how loud your call. Sitting here, writing very slowly, I close my eyes much of the time and stop typing, trying to hear what I was asking for years ago, to hear what you are asking for now, trying to hear through all the distance, differences and borders between us.

I admit that while writing this, I still sometimes get sidetracked, caught up in ‘writing’, trying to get this book done, rather than listening and hearing. When that happens I later have to throw out all that writing, and it might take me a week or two of not-writing to erase all thought of accomplishment, of getting this done, and return back to that state of just listening, of letting only the hearing pass through my typing fingers. It’s hard to write a book like this, to maintain that constant openness to just hearing. But it’s worth it, to listen more clearly to you, to be true to what you need, and to be true to what I have to offer you.

HONOR, VALIDATE YOUR ASKING
Many people–far too many–are feeling like you, right now, the world over. Some might be faring better than you, others might be doing much worse than you. But do not fall into the trap of comparing, of thinking ‘maybe I shouldn’t be asking for help, others are much worse off than me’. Also don’t fall into the trap of thinking ‘they’re doing so much better than me, why are they asking for help!’ You can have fame, riches, mansions, a career you love, family you love, travel anywhere, have the adoration of the world… and still actually feel so awful, so hopeless, that you want to end it all. There are no borders when it comes to who feels so deeply awful that they make the call for help.

Validate whatever you’re going through, with a validation that is pure and has nothing to do with comparing the magnitude of your problems to whatever perceived magnitudes you feel others are going through. You can be rich, you can be homeless; you can be old, you can be young; in torture or terminal illness, or in fantastic athletic condition; starving, or obese; none of your details need to be compared with any other human on Earth.

This is about YOU.

This is about what you, and you alone, are going through. We are not concerned with magnitudes and comparisons here. You have made your Deep Call For Help, so we are going to deal with that completely, because you have met the only qualification needed, in order to be answered: you asked.

Generally, for most of our lives we carry along in a kind of ‘normal operating’ lifestyle mode, where we go through our days working and coping through our usual lifelong struggles and successes. Sometimes some of us slip and slide and are knocked so far off the course we wanted, that we become trapped… elsewhere. Trapped in some state of living where we have become so overwhelmed we don’t know how to bail ourselves out and climb back into a life we can deal with. Some of us visit this dark depth only briefly because we are answered, the situation is ‘solved’ or escaped from quickly. We didn’t spend enough time there to live with it, learn, become familiar with it, become changed and deeply transformed by it.

Others of us become more deeply entrenched by it, consumed, overcome, suffer long-term from it. At that stage, coping becomes corroded away and all that’s left is being lost in dark depths and not knowing how to climb out again.

But the short-term visitors, and the long-consumed visitors, still experience the same ‘I’m in hell’ feeling of despair. And being immersed in this feeling for any period of time can seriously impact your health, can corrode all aspects of your mind and your life, demolish relationships and careers, cause you to lose all the belongings outside your skin, and all the belongings from your skin inward, too.

When it’s that bad, when we exhaust all our inner resources again and again and then some part of us finally admits we cannot solve our situation alone, then we start to ask other people, consult other resources. And if those fail us too, then we start to ask… anything, anyone, ‘out there’. Anywhere.

WHO ARE YOU REALLY ASKING?
When you make this kind of call, you might fool yourself and think you are still searching externally for help, for money, solutions, salvation, Jesus, God, Buddha, Allah, some answer from someone outside yourself, some book, some guru, some deity, some system;

But at this level of asking, you are really asking… yourself. You are asking, “How can I be okay, within all this that is happening?” On some level you are recognizing that it’s a ‘mind’ thing, that it’s your mind thing, and on some level you know that even if you cannot ‘solve’ or ‘be rescued’ from whatever troubles are happening, your mind can be worked on. The way you react and respond and feel to your troubles, can be worked on, even if the troubles themselves persist. And you are only seeking outside sources, like me and my website, because you do not quite know how to ask your own inner self for the kind of help you need.

Yet.

You may have asked yourself a thousand different ways, every hour of every day, but that doesn’t mean you have learned how to ask yourself in the way you need to ask.

That kind of asking, and that kind of answering, usually takes years of learning before you can hear in the way you need to hear it. It’s a ‘developed skill’, for lack of a better term. This depth of asking and answering has always been inside you, but somewhere along the way you stopped knowing how to listen to it. Life beat it out of you and you need to go find it again. That’s a long way of saying:

This book offers you only one thing: answers which you already intrinsically know. These are answers that already live deep inside you, but perhaps you’ve forgotten or life has blinded you to them. And that deepest place inside you, the origin of your gut-deep call for help, is where your answers also dwell, waiting to be called upon in the right way. Your deepest place of calling for help, is also the place your deepest answers will whisper back from.

One day you’ll learn how to ask and answer entirely within yourself. When you do, it will help you, save you, even create you. Until then, perhaps you need a nudge from someone who spent a few decades learning that for himself. This is all I have to offer you.

Thanks again for asking, for making the effort, for your courage.

A FEW THINGS TO CONSIDER ABOUT ASKING:
Consider that you have possibly grown up learning that to ask for help is a sign of weakness and failure. But consider that those of us who have learned to ask for help realize it is a sign of courage, of strength. We realize it is an acknowledgement of a limitation, an assertion that we are accepting a reality about ourselves. We realize it takes courage and strength to recognize this reality, to let go of old false preconceptions we had about our limits, and to break through the fear-barrier of asking for help.

Consider that asking for help opens a new starting place in your life, establishes a new and more realistic work table for your relationship with yourself and with the people in your life. Consider that when you ask for help, you are letting go of your old wish to have control over everything, to have the solutions to your every difficulty. Consider that asking for help opens you up to entirely new events and relationships that would never have happened had you continued trying to solve problems all by yourself, ‘in a bubble’. Consider that asking may actually expand your life into strange and wondrous events you could never have conceived of while you were trying to control things and work them out ‘your way’.

Consider that there are many ways of asking for help. If some of those ways are dangerous to you, know that there is no such thing as ‘being wrong’ in asking for help from some other ways, less obvious ways. If you are afraid to ask your government for help, or the law, then perhaps the right book or website can help in a hidden way. If you cannot ask your family or the accepted people in your life for help, perhaps there is someone on the fringes, even outcast from your regular circles, who will be safe to ask. Consider that perhaps you have been asking in the same ways over and over, ways that have never worked for you, and that there may be an entirely different way for you to ask for help. Maybe there are even endless different ways to ask.

Consider that you do not even need to ask your god or deity or religion, or anyone or anything, for help; consider that you can just silently… ask. Consider that simply the act of asking, without asking anyone in particular, opens you to accepting more realities about yourself, and often opens you to entirely new forces out there that you’d never really considered before.

Ask the source that can give it to you
That means every source and any source
Inside you
And outside you

Consider that asking for help does not necessarily mean you will receive the answer or solution you originally asked for, or even an answer that you understand at this time. Consider that many answers will arrive gradually, through a process, perhaps in parts and perhaps not at all. But consider that, by asking, some answers will come, some solutions will come, in their own way and at their own time.

Consider that it is unrealistic to expect entire solutions and clear answers for all your problems. To have some answers and some solutions, no matter how dilute or strange or difficult to understand, may be all you need in order to begin really working at your salvation; a ‘bridge over troubled waters’ would be nice, but all you really need is enough scattered boulders, close enough to leap across from one to the next, to make it to the other side. Consider that when you ask for help, that’s all you may receive… just scattered boulders across the water, but each one appears before you drown.

And consider that, with all this leaping and swimming to the next boulder, when you finally reach the far shore… all that effort and exercise has made you so strong! The people who have things easier and can drive across that easy bridge are still pale and soft and don’t know the reality of real hardship, they are blind to the true experience of crossing hardships. But when you make that crossing, then you do know. And that experience gives you some very powerful knowledge and capabilities for the rest of your life.

Consider that asking for help, instead of making you weak, will make you so much stronger than you ever thought you could be. But it will make you stronger in its own ways, in its own time, so consider asking often, for a long time, in many different ways, and then letting go of expecting whatever outcome your old controlling mind thinks should happen in return.

Just ask for help. As often as you need to–even all day. For as long as you can. And even longer than that. In fact, consider asking forever.

NEXT:
I am currently writing the first two chapters, perhaps the most important ones to this book. Sorry they’re not ready yet, and I am working on them as I write this. For now, as long as this note is still here, please continue here. I promise I’ll publish the first two chapters very soon.

28 Comments »

  • Skylie says:

    You sound like such a caring person. Thank you for thanking people for crying out for help! I want you to know that that mattered to me greatly, even though I’m alone at a keyboard. It really mattered to me to hear those kind words, it released something in me, made me feel acknowledged and heard. Amazing, no? Am looking forward to getting a grip on things and feeling buoyed oops gotta go

  • Mike says:

    Thank you. I started with the mind tool (Be your own Guide) that gave me enough to continue reading The Course & some level of happiness which I have not had in about 1-1/3 years. Thanks again & to all those who are still having trouble Keep Reading.

    Mike

  • Rebweb says:

    I don’t know what to say or where to start. I can’t start from the beginning because this would be way too long. Ok, I guess I’ll start with I had a house fire and lost everything in it. The insurance company gave us very little for our stuff and had a company remodel what was damaged. They screwed us out of 10s of thousands of dollars and soot was still falling from the ceiling, onto my child’s toys, onto furniture, onto everything. Our home was landlocked by a huge farm that had been for sale for a very long time. Suddenly the guy who lived across the river behind us bought it and put a bunch of cows on it. They messed up the road, our fences, our land and we’re dangerous. They caused the whole area to stink and made everything horrible. We had to put into the house most of the money we got from our stuff just to make it livable only for the land and surrounding area to become a disaster. We couldn’t handle it anymore so we decided to sale. They certainly made it where no one else would buy it so they offered to buy it. Only for half what we paid for it. No one else would buy it so we had to accept (no lawyer would help, we tried). So we decided to take what little money we got, pay off some bills, and travel for a while in an rv we got a loan on. We start off on our travel and stop at a place to replace the refrigerator. The mechanics get to looking around and find so much wrong with it. They guy we bought it from said it was sound. The mechanic we took it to right after we got it said it looked fine. These people found $30,000 in damage that had to be fixed. This was our home so we had to take what little money left and fix it. They said they’d have it done in a couple of days and three weeks later they finally “finished” it. They did not do a good job. Did things we said not to do because we were running out of money. During this my little girl got sick twice. We finally get out of there and go stay at a campground. Nothing is working out. My husband can’t work because things keep breaking down. My daughter developed these tics and keeps getting sick ( we take her to doctors and they say she just has colds). The rv is still having problems. My daughter gets bit by a rat and we rush her into the doctor but they say it’s fine. We move on and still everything is wrong. Nothing we do is going right. We decided to just go back but a late spring blizzard bars our way so we have to go south. We end up going to a big city and the whole thing is awful. We try making our way back again and my daughter gets a fever again (we stay in one place so that we know she’s ok. After she seems over it we move on). We are tired of taking her to the doctor just for them to tell us she is fine so we decide to just treat the symptoms and stick around until she is better. Only this time the fever doesn’t react to medication and it’s getting higher. We rush her to a doctor again and he says she looks fine that it’s probably just a bug and will get over it in a couple of days (it’s already been three days). The fever hasn’t gone away and still isn’t reacting to medication. There aren’t really any other symptoms so tomorrow we are going to take her back. They will do blood tests and whatnot. The only thing I can find that matches what’s going on is leukemia or lymphoma. I’m scared to death. I can’t think straight. And this has all happened in a month and a half. There has been more, much more, but I can’t think right now. Not only that but my whole life has been like this. One huge heartache right after the other. I have no family. I have no friends. My marriage is a shame. I keep trying to keep going. I try to do what’s right. I’m a good person. I can’t take it anymore. If she has something bad I’ll be here for her. I’ll still try to be what I can for her. But if she doesn’t make it .. I pray it’s something nor serious. Please please let her be ok. Give me all the pain and let her be happy and healthy. But if she’s not and she doesn’t make it in ending this. I’m going to not let life do this to me anymore. I love her so veer much. I can’t watch this happen to her. I went through so much to have her. Why does god hate me? If you’re one of those who spout that god crap you can hold your tongue. Yes, if there is a God it does hate me. My life has had more pain than 1,000 people could endure. It’s so tempting to end all this worry, fear and pain now but I won’t do that to her. I don’t know what help I could even get. I don’t think anyone can help me. I don’t know what I’m doing. I just know that I’m dying inside and I am so very lost. I wish I could at least know why all this is happening. Why is my poor little girl suffering. If I am hated that much then let me have it all. Don’t go after her. Give me the pain. Please, give me it all

  • Monika says:

    I just need someone to talk to…

  • Jason says:

    This is going to be long, I am sorry.

    When I was 3 ( remember because my little brothers had just been born) my father asked me to go get the soap, I ran back to camp (we were living in a campground because my parents could not afford a house) my mom told me that dad had taken it with him when he left. I ran back and told my dad and he beat me because he said he knew that already.

    He was attempting to teach us to swim not long after and let go of me, I remember thinking this was more punishment and that he already had three others boys and a girl that he did not need a stupid kid. I remember being so far out I could barely see the trees. I told him I could not swim that far he said you can do it and let go I managed a while but after pleading for help a while I went down. I woke on the beach to him pumping my chest, I turned to the side and vomited. To this day I still vividly recall throwing up red seaweed , which I was convinced the red was my blood on the seaweed.

    A little later it is Christmas and we are living in a red brick house, remember my sister hiding from the bus behind a tree because she did not want to go to school ( she is a year older that me and in kindergarten) and thinking that she was stupid because I would have loved to get away from the house. Someone asked me what I wanted for christmas and I remember thinking I wanted a train like my brother was asking for (an electric train set that ran around the track by itself) I figured I was good and that Santa would bring it to me. Christmas came and my present under the tree was a wooden train, I was crying because Santa thought my brother and sister were “more good than I was” and I could not see why, I was not hiding from the bus behind a tree. My father got extremely angry and sent me to our room (all my brothers and me shared a room, my older brother hated it because my little brothers peed the bed, I told him he did too) He came in later that night and I was beaten worse than the other time I remembered. He roared at me that he was had working and that I was an ungrateful little ass. I remember being confused because I had thought Christmas came from Santa, I remember being ashamed because I did not want to make life harder on my dad, I remember being hurt because I had not asked him for anything.

    Fast forward maybe three months or so. I still was not in school, I asked my mom to see the magazine my dad showed me. She said she did not know where they were. I was upset, but was about to fall asleep when she came and got me. She took me into her room and took off all her clothes, I remember tell her I was okay that I was going to sleep. She demanded that I kiss her and that that I kiss her down there. I still have nightmares today (40 plus years later) about her fat stomach and the red angry lines that coursed down from her belly button like a mutant starfish., nightmares about her and my grandmother nude and me eating their thighs as if they were a thanksgiving turkey. I believe this is one of the reason I do not like chicken, turkey, or duck.

    Flash forward again I do have knowledge off i between but other than “Sesame Daddy” a skit my father recorded on the tape player that was interrupted by his dog getting out somehow and us 3 oldest kids being threatened if we did not catch it. I do remember the despair (the terror of what dad would do if we did not catch her) in MY voice because she would not come when I called her.
    To be truthful I actually believe that this occurred before the campground because I remember people calling the place by the name of the town my little brothers were born in.

    I remember being attacked by a gang of older kids because we were different, I remember my older brother running away while me and my sister tried to defend ourselves.

    I remember my dad coming home from work and as soon as he was through the door he took his shoe off and threw it into my belly.

    I remember countless night when he would wake us kids up at 12 or 1 at night because we had not done the dishes right or some other vague thing.

    I remember him shoving my hand into a glass causing it to shatter because you could not clean a glass that way.

    I remember trying to run away when I was ten and having my plans laid low because I had appendicitis, I remember the accusations when the found my supplies in my drawer. I remember my parents taking the first hundred dollars (saved from lawn work to buy myself a ten speed) I had ever earned so we could move to New Mexico. Repaid with a basic bicycle.
    I remember then taking the three hundreds (saved to by a saxophone I had earned there to move us to Arizona. Repaid with a goat I did not want. Which they sold when we moved to Florida again.

    I was sixteen now and I remember my dad sicing my brother on me, egging him on until he attacked me. I remember being confused why my brother would attack me and being confused as to why my father would try to get me and my brother to fight. I ran out of the house and did not come back for three days. I remember saving up three thousand dollars for a car and deciding to treat my family to a day at Disney (remember seven people) and going to withdraw the money and being told I could not because I had a negative balance. I went in to the bank to dispute it only to have my father trail me explaining it was probably a mix up trying to convince me not to go in. Turns out he drew every penny out of my account. I felt that since I was paying 70 dollars a week plus food to my parents that I had a right to that money. But the law says that as a minor all your income is your parents until you turn 18.

    I got married and 21 and was totally in love, unfortunately it was not reciprocated although I deluded myself into believing that i was. During our wedding reception she disappeared for an hour and a half she came back with a story about talking to a friend I swallowed it and kept swallowing her stories for the next nine years. She refused to work for the first three years we were married, and did not keep up with the house work but I was in love. She worked between 1993 and 1996 but I was trying to go to school and work She kept complaining about the altitude and the cold (Colorado). In Colorado I had two financial opportunities for me and I let her talk me out of both of them, she felt they were too risky.

    We moved back from Colorado in Jan 1996 and once again she refused to work, and for the next 4 years she did not work. I experienced a crises of love in late 96 because the relationship did not feel like love to me but I decided to rededicate myself to the marriage, I though I was not giving it enough attention.

    In 2000 I caught her cheating. I have seen found out that this was a series of cheats for her from the very first day we were married. The attempts i have made to date since then I have kept running into the same type of person. I have been also discovering that I am choosing similar types of people even for things as simple as friendship.

    I KNOW that all the events since I became and adult were my decision and I KNOW that I would not be here if I had followed my convictions and I feel hatred and anger toward to others for the things they have done and a loathing. anger, and hatred for myself for not deciding differently.

    My mother passed away last year and I thought her feeble attempt to apologise would help but the situation has gotten worse. I feel paralysed, I feel that I have become an asswhole and I think and think off how to get out and come up with no answers.

  • Rani says:

    I need someone to talk to.. please

  • Chloe says:

    I just really need to talk, lots of stuffs been happening latlely, and ya.

  • Reese says:

    I dont know what is happening to me. I feel like my brain is twisting in billions of tiny knots. And every time I loosen one, each thread becomes more and more fragile.. I just want to be somebody. I feel insane. And lost. A freak, especially socially. Even in my own home my skin feels alienated…

  • Phoebe says:

    Thank you so much for these pages

  • suji says:

    dear,

    pls ask god to help me.i am depressed.

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