………  by ric justiss

No man is an island. There will be times when we don’t
know what to do. We know we need help. But we seldom
seek help. We usually keep our problems to ourselves.

Men especially, but also people in general, are much to
proud, macho, invincible and reluctant to appear vulnerable
or weak.

Many are brought up in an unrealistic environment. We are
led to believe that strength is good. We are supposed to be
successful at everything and failure or weakness are not
allowed. To be honest I don't know at what age most of us
imbedded these beliefs.

Men may have a harder time with seeking advice than women do. The pressures that are
created for the male start at a very early age. Playing at home with siblings or friends, then at
school, our male world continues to develop until we arrive to the business world. By then
we are hardened as "most males should be", and the business world continues to prolong
the myth of the male toughness to never show weakness or emotions. We like to be in

How then do we seek advice or help if needed? Very simply we don't. We don't utilize the
support system around us.

It is about time that we become more human, that we recognize not only our weaknesses,
but that seeking help is not a shame. If we stop putting ourselves in this difficult position we
may discover that being vulnerable is part of being human, and that seeking help is not a

We go to the doctor when we need medicine. We go to the plumber when the water is
leaking everywhere. We go to the lawyer when we are facing tough legal issues. We should
look at more everyday issues the same way. Talk to someone who has been there, one who
has gone through the same thing. More than likely they will be glad to help and you can have
saved yourself more and bigger problems.

I will occasionally have someone come to me with a question or a problem. If you really
believe I have some unique insight, and you’d like to probe my brain on a particular topic,
then please do seek me out. I love focused discussions with specific intent. I love investing
time with people who’ve thought long and hard about a topic or problem. I love it when you’
ve at least attempted a point of view. That is when engagement becomes meaningful. That is
when I’m motivated to interact and help.

But go to someone you trust. And then when they give you advice, take it.

I am amazed at the number of people that, no. 1, don’t seek advice at all, and no.2, those that
ask for specific advice from someone they trust, and then reject it or fail to follow through
and do what was advised. I see it in our pool matches each week. Some players don't need
or want any advice, they are good. And then, some ask for advice, then decide not to take it.
But whether it is something as small as a game of pool or something more important, it is ok
to ask for help. It is OK! The best minds do it all the time. My kids, not so much. But the smart
and successful are always asking for advice, the more advice the better.

Don’t take any wooden nickels and don’t put all your eggs in one basket……Ric

January 16, 2009
Just My Opinion