When airline passengers board a flight, an attendant will describe the emergency procedures. She will remind us: “In the event of an emergency, be sure to secure your own oxygen mask before helping others.” I’ve heard these instructions used metaphorically many times, and I mostly agree with the descriptions I’ve heard. In this article, I’d like to carry it further and discuss what’s missing.
On the plane, the number one priority is to make sure that we can breathe properly. Otherwise, we may pass out while trying to help our fellow passengers secure their masks, and everyone will suffer. Similarly, in life, we need to make sure our own business and personal lives aren’t going to suffer when we take the time to help a friend with his crisis. That’s a valid metaphor. We do need to follow it because the equivalent to passing out in the airplane is a failed business or a disastrous personal life.
The part I take exception to is that this is not the case only during emergency situations. In other words, we all need to help each other, always. Most of us can remember to help during times of crisis or in an emergency. For example, when there is a large natural disaster in the world, it is immediately followed by an outpouring of support from people and organizations. Or, we all remember to help a friend who is going through a divorce, or whose wife has health problems. What we forget is that we are supposed to help each other, always, during good times and bad.
I believe that the best way to get what you need is to ask for it. However, you must also remember to ask others what they need for bigger success. More than likely, the huge need that was hindering your friend’s forward momentum is no big deal for you to provide: maybe it’s a vendor referral, or a new client introduction. Assistance that may cost you only a little time and effort will help him see huge progress. As everyone makes these small gestures the rule instead of the exception, we all become more successful.
If the plane loses cabin pressure we need to make sure that children and the elderly can put on their masks. But we also need to hold the terminal door for the man with full hands and help the lady put her carry-on in the overhead compartment. We all need to strive for success (however that looks to each of us) and the best way to make that happen is by helping those around us achieve their goals.
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While building his businesses from the ground up, Joshua Bevan sought out some of the best mentorship. He has learned that the path to success is difficult and simple at the same time. Joshua has committed his life to learning how to, “Earn all you can. Save all you can. Give all you can.” Through videos, blogs and speaking events, he will pass that knowledge forward.