“If you don’t go after what you want, you’ll never have it. If you don’t ask, the answer is always no. If you don’t step forward, you’re always in the same place.” ~ Nora Roberts
Why is it so hard to ask for what you want? For most people it’s because we don’t want to be seen as pushy, aggressive or selfish. Asking for what you want is often necessary if you are in fact going to get what you want. Yes, there are times when you get what you want without having to ask, but in those situations you may have waited longer than you needed or didn’t get exactly what you wanted.
Learning to ask is a skill that will build your confidence and help you achieve your goals much quicker. Below are five tips for asking for what you want.
Make sure what you are asking for is truly what you want: Make sure you’re clear on your intention and ask for exactly what you want. When asking, be specific and don’t ask for less!
Understand what you’re asking for and the consequences that may result: Maybe you have to have an uncomfortable conversation or you risk upsetting someone. On the other hand, you may just get what you ask for, so make sure you’re ready!
Forget the Fear! When asking for what we want we often face the fear of rejection, fear of what will happen if we don’t get what we’re asking for and even fear of getting what we want. These are common fears and sometimes get in the way of going after what we want. Think through the consequences (both positive and negative) so you can prepare and forget the fear.
Believe you deserve what you’re asking for: You must believe that you are worthy and deserve what you’re asking for. Be open to receiving it, trust that the universe will provide. Even though you believe you deserve it, know that it may not be instant gratification and trust that it will happen at the right time.
Ask without being attached to how your request is received. For instance, you ask for a raise. You’re offered a partial raise in your base wage and an increase in the form of a bonus. If you’re focused on an outcome of receiving only an increase in your base, you could be disappointed even though you received what you asked for. Remember you may have to ask more than once, more than one way, talk with more than one person or change something.
Many of us have been conditioned to accept things the way they are rather than to ask for what we want. Start small to build up your confidence by asking for what you want for dinner or suggesting what to watch on TV. If you receive a dish that isn’t right at a restaurant, ask that it be corrected. The more you practice, the more confident you become and the easier it is to ask.