• Priya Venkatesan

How to be open to receiving?



As a leader, I always like to be the giver: to my team, stakeholders & management. I feel powerful when I am able to solve problems for others. People appreciate my resourcefulness. 

As I am scaling up to lead more cross functional strategic programs, I find giving is good, but I need to be open to receiving as well. My colleagues say I am resistant to receiving help. They believe that I want to be a 'know/do it all' and hence seldom ask for help.

Well I don't do it consciously, but somewhere receiving makes me feel a lot less. How do I ask for help without feeling uncomfortable about it?
                                    ~ Head, Strategic Programs

Culturally, some of us may find receiving help/ support from others easy :- Gratitude for the support & One job less!

Some others find it hard:- How can I trouble somebody else? What will they think of me?


In either case, as we grow in our career, "receiving" becomes inevitable.

It's the "quality" with which we receive that can be worked on.


What are the advantages of being open to receiving?

  • Others have an opportunity to give back

  • You feel less loaded

  • Increased collaboration in the work setting

  • Gratitude & Curiosity

  • Humility


What comes in the way of receiving?

  • False Pride - I can do everything better than others

  • Self-reliance - I don't want others to spend time on me

  • Hesitance - I feel uncomfortable asking for support


How can you be at peace with receiving?


  1. Know that receiving does not reduce you:

Being open to support/ help from others does not reduce you - it just enhances your accomplishment, you and the relationship with others around you.

You can achieve more, you can be more by collaborating with others in meaningful ways of giving and receiving.

Receiving gives you a chance to value and respect people around you and their contribution to who you are today.

It makes you humble.


2. Even if you are the Captain, Career is a team sport

Nobody made it alone to the top without mentors, coaches, advisors, cheerleaders and teams.


If you are in the career game, you sometimes have to pass, sometimes score with the ball you receive and learn to work well with others.


The joy in the game is found in sharing!


3. Hesitation comes from the story in your head - and so does acceptance


Many times, its the story in our head that creates discomfort, self-doubt, etc. about receiving. If you are the author of the story, make it work for you!


Receiving is empowering! It tells you someone has got your back and there are blessings around you!



What can help you be open to receiving?


#coaching #executivecoaching #receiving #leadershipcoaching

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