Why is it that so many of us have such a hard time delegating? Is it because we truly believe we can do it better ourselves? Or it is a trust thing – will others really follow through with what we delegate?
Wanting to do it all ourselves is a fear-based mentality
For many of us, it really comes down to a matter of control and yes, being a perfectionist! Because if things aren’t done the way we want, we fear looking incompetent, right? It’s a mindset that is a surefire way to actually being incompetent because if you keep it up on a consistent basis, you will lose your you-know-what.
Acting this way can be utterly exhausting. Do it for long enough and you will crash and burn. Then you’ll need time to recuperate which means you’ll fall behind because you haven’t delegated anything … and so the vicious cycle continues. Don’t believe me? Well, I have a ‘Grace story’ to share with you.
Several years ago, I was the hamster-running-on-the wheel, doing so much myself because I truly believed that it was easier and that I really didn’t have a choice. Then one of my coaches pulled me aside and straight up told me I was INSANE! He asked me why the hell was I doing so much myself? Did I have a death wish??!!
He then advised me to delegate and ask for help at home and at the office. If I didn’t, he said the next best move was to go out and pick my plot. NO JOKE! He was deadly (pun intended!) serious.
So I started to learn to delegate and ask for help. It was not easy! I’d always found asking for help a challenge because I didn’t want to burden anyone. But I soon realized that the people in my life enjoyed helping because they wanted to and received their own satisfaction from it. And I was denying them that pleasure.
The benefits of delegating
Delegating and asking for help is great for you but also for others. They learn to build upon their own strengths while lessening your load. While I do admit I have had to ask my family 10x to do something for me, it has slowly changed too. I have learned how to ask to actually receive – but that’s a whole ‘nother blog post!
Another key benefit of delegating is you become more productive. You can spend time doing things you enjoy while someone else does the things you don’t (for example, pay a high school or college student to help you with some routine tasks). A happier you makes for a more productive you. With a fresh mind and soul, you can easily focus on the harder, more important jobs and do them more efficiently.
A side benefit to taking time out to enjoy yourself – you’ll discover that when you’re not around, things still get done!
Try it and see
What is the worst thing that can happen if you start delegating tasks? Maybe your kids or spouse won’t fold the towels perfectly or fill the dishwasher the way you want it. Or perhaps your employee won’t craft the email in the exact way you would. Will your life fall apart if that happens??? Now, I’m not saying it’s bad to have high standards – I still have mine! – but they should never be at the expense of your sanity.
Take some time to think about how being more productive, less stressed and having more energy will benefit your life - as opposed to doing everything yourself, being a perfectionist and feeling exhausted. You’ll certainly get the former if you learn to delegate!