“Ask and it shall be given”, is one of the most famous verses in the Bible. There’s a very good reason for that. The self-made millionaires in my study made it a habit to ask for help. Yet, despite the fame, very few take this advice and ask for help from others. Why?
Fear. Actually, two fears: #1 The Fear of Rejection and #2 The Fear of Obligation.
Rejection makes you feel embarrassed, it’s humiliating, its demeaning. It can cause anger, hatred and, well, pick your favorite negative emotion. Rejection takes us to a deep, dark negative place.
Obligation means you owe someone. Someone did you a favor and now you owe them. Many people don’t ask others for help because they don’t want to feel like they are then obligated to them.
Self-made millionaires have been able to overcome these two fears, because they learned two magic secrets. Want to know they are?
Secret #1 Flipping the Dopamine Switch by Managing Expectations – Dopamine is a neuro-chemical produced by the brain. A drop in dopamine causes negative emotions. A rise in dopamine causes positive emotions. When you expect a “yes” after you ask for help but receive a “no” your dopamine level drops immediately, generating feelings of sadness, depression, anger (negative emotions). Self-made millionaires somehow figured this out and have come up with a way to flip the switch on this dopamine process. They manage their expectations by conditioning themselves for rejection when they ask for help. They actually expect to be rejected, so when they are rejected they’re ok with it. Their dopamine level is unaffected. When someone surprises them, and instead says “yes”, their dopamine level immediately shoots up and they instantly become happy, optimistic and enthusiastic (positive emotions). They’ve figured out a way to flip the dopamine switch.
Secret #2 Obligation Creates Partnerships – Self-made millionaires also figured something else out. When you are obligated to someone it actually strengthens relationships. You will eventually reciprocate the favor and that relationship will become stronger as a result. Obligation forges partnerships. You need partnerships to succeed in life. Obligation is a way to gain partners.