Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Why Won't We Ask for Help?

I admit it, I should have gone to the doctor before I developed bronchitis. What is it about some people who refuse to admit weakness and ask for help?

Perhaps your mind has jumped to the recent death of Natasha Richardson who died after a fall on a Quebec ski slope. Clearly, she was offered help along the way and refused it. Now, of course, there will be a search for blame, but really, how could help be given when it was refused repeatedly? I read she even signed the waiver.

A few months ago, I read a blog about the lead up to the death of coaching genius Thomas Leonard. It was written by a dear friend of his who walked through the events that lead to his death. There were signs of a heart attack several hours before he died and he dismissed each sign.

In these two high-profile cases, the result was death. Fortunately, my obstinacy only led to bronchitis, but it has me wondering how I could have fallen into the same trap as Richardson and Leonard.

Clearly, there is a tendency in certain types of people (not the hypochondriacs obviously) that is averse to admitting physical weakness. I seem to be part of this group. What's the lesson for me? What if I'm wandering around having a heart attack and claiming it is indigestion?

I need to adjust how I see reaching out. Reaching out is strength. Getting help early lessens the inconvenience, the expense and the vulnerability. Okay, okay (Mom and Craig) next time I feel my chest tighten and my throat scratch, I will get it looked at. I have two clear cut examples of how wrong things can go if my pride rules my health.

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