Clear thinking cannot come from a mind plagued with worry. A smart person knows this and acts on it accordingly. They do so by seeking help from others whose minds are not clogged by the same worry, doubt, and fear.
In 2017, around November, there was a terrible economic crunch in our country following the election period. A client of mine, Patricia, came to me with a problem that had worried her. This had been to the point that she was physically ill. As she explained the situation to me, it was clear that she had the answer to her problem. However, her state of mind could not permit her to see it.
Patricia was a fashion designer who had run her own successful business for over a decade. When the hard economic times hit, she was unable to settle a few loans she had taken. The banks holding her money had closed her out and had taken over her warehouse as well. Because of this, she couldn’t secure another loan without proper collateral. Moreover, she couldn’t continue with her production so as to get money to pay the bank. That is when her worry and fear began.
Identifying the problem
As we talked with her, a few simple questions revealed these facts. She was an experienced designer who had enjoyed great success in her 10 years in business. Moreover, she had established a line of buyers both wholesale and retail who had supported her from the beginning of her business. When describing her personal life, she revealed that she was a leader at her local church and her home life was a happy one. As I summed up her story to her, I told Patricia that although she was facing this predicament, she was rich in her values, which I believe counts the most.
“I know,” was her reply. “But I am worried because I am broke.”
“A person who has the sort of values you possess is never broke,” I replied, “because they are the best security that they can offer.”
“But all the banks don’t think so.”
“No they don’t and they have their own reasons,” I explained. “But there are other ways of finding people who do, people who think that you and your business are worth saving.”
Finding a solution with help from others
I then asked her to think of 10 people among her friends, people who had considerable financial standing. Then, find the same number of her customers who had been buying clothes from her for a considerable period of time. She would then ask them to lend her the money she needed to get back on her feet.
I had hardly finished speaking when her eyes lit up, the glassy look of worry and fear evaporating from them. She then hurriedly took a notebook from her purse and began to write. A minute later, she handed me the book and on it were the names of 5 ladies.
“There!” she said, excited about her newly found hope. “These are the names of the 5 women who will surely come to my aid. Each of them has bought clothes from me for many years; they have confidence both in me and in my business. I will convince them by offering to give them an extra discount on all the clothes they buy from me in the future.”
Getting back on her feet
What Patricia had adopted was the same plan which had saved Henry Ford in his early days at Ford Motor Company. He was able to get the operating capital he needed from the same men who purchased his cars. They were the owners of dealerships in his town.
“All this makes sense to me now. It is clear to see,” she remarked. “Although what puzzles me is why I didn’t think of this before I came to see you.”
This same question has troubled many people who possess the answer to their own problems but have to get someone else to reveal it to them.
Patricia went back to Nakuru and eight months later I received an email from her explaining how her plan had played out. At the footnote were these words which I keep in my heart. “Thank you for introducing me to my other self.”
The footnote told the whole story. All I did was help loosen her from the grip of worry and fear that had engulfed her. That had caused her to set for herself unnecessary limitations and brought her untold suffering.
The greatest lesson I believe anyone can learn from this is the discovery of this one fact. That the best asset we possess is our ability to get help from others. To get the help of those who are able and willing to happily give us the counsel we need when we are at our wit’s end is only human. Let us reach out and find the solutions we need.