Ask For What You Want (And Get It)
Learn to live without regrets
Whether it's dealing with a personal or business relationship, there are certain key elements to include to successfully ask for what you want and get it.
Figure out what it is you want, whether it's a raise or a promotion at work, or to move in with your boyfriend, and go for it. Make sure that you really want what you're asking for, and not just asking because you think you should, or the timing is right.
And when you ask, be honest, forthright, and kind. Be ready to accept the outcome, whatever it is, and congratulate yourself on taking a chance to make something happen. Having the right attitude is part of what makes it more likely you will achieve your goal.
Here are four tips from career and life coach Joshua Evans:
- Make sure you ask, out loud. You have to ask, otherwise the answer is always no. Many of my clients have made the mistake to thinking that other person knew what they wanted. You need to be explicit and direct with your request. Leave no room for ambiguity.
- Be confident. When we are confident in what we want and committed to the outcome, then we can easily face any challenges while asking for what we want.
- Be direct. Do not beat around the bush. Be as direct as you can and as specific as the situation allows.
- Do not give yourself an out. Too many people leave room to wiggle away from what they want because it can cause discomfort. If you truly want something, ask for it without being shy or apologetic.
Esteem levels rise and fall
Try to pay attention to your esteem levels, because when you're at a high, it's a good time to ask for what you want.
"When my esteem is high, I'm on top of the world, and I feel I can do anything," said Jennifer Bright Reich, co-founder and editorial director of The Mommy MD Guides. "That's when to ask for what I want. And I almost always get it. Other times, my esteem is lower, often because my energy is lower. I am not coming from a point of strength, so I'm trying to coast, not reaching out to people with new business proposals for a bit. When my energy and esteem returns, I know I will be back to operating from a place of confidence and strength."
It's also important to know that wanting something for yourself isn’t selfish.
"When you believe that asking for something that you want is selfish, you don’t allow yourself to even ask. Often, when sub-consciously you feel it would be selfish, you might even repress the desire for it, or quickly dismiss it mentally when the desire comes up. This kind of self-negation can stop your request from getting out of your mouth, or distort the way you ask so it is no longer clear that it is important to you," said Gary van Warmerdam, life coach and author.
"Having desires, wants, and needs is a natural part of the human experience. We have a desire for water when we are thirsty, and food when we are hungry. These aren’t the only wants, needs, and desires we have as normal human beings. Other wants and needs that are natural are for emotional connection, support, time for our self, freedom, empathy, compassion, affection, understanding, sex, creativity, physical exercise, and to express our own authentic voice. When we don’t have these needs met we get restless, frustrated, or possibly depressed. Having wants and desires is natural. It doesn’t mean we are weak or petty. It means we are human. Meeting our wants and needs is what helps us feel satisfied and fulfilled," van Warmerdam said.
And remember, it is not anyone else's responsibility to give you what you ask for. Don't hold it against them if they say no. If negotiation doesn't work, then gather your wits, and move forward.