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“The Future Belongs to Those Who Ask!” ~ 3DS


I was invited by a colleague of mine to attend a negotiation seminar a few days ago. It was very inspiring, indeed, and validated many of the concepts I know and apply. The presentation touched on asking for discounts as we attempt to close some business deals. “If you don’t ask, the answer is always: NO!” the presenter announced. I agreed with that, but disagreed with asking for service discount. To me, that meant risking accepting less of what usually is offered (not too many people are conscientious, or are aware of the ramifications it has on their profession). With respect to displayed merchandise, the risks of getting less when you ask for a discount may be minimal, so go ahead ask for it. Demand it if you can (of course while paying attention to your tone). Take it at full price without asking, and you’ll always wonder if you could have done better. Those arguments made me reflect on the power of “asking” as determining much of our future life path.

Malcom X once said: “The future belongs to those who prepare for it today”. In a similar vein, Eleanor Roosevelt proposed: “The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams.” In a congruent fashion, I believe that “the future belongs to those who ask!”  I asked to join the psychotherapy training program, and was lucky to get in despite being way past the deadline. I was surfing the net for ICF accredited “Coaching” schools and encountered the International Coach Academy. They called me and provided me with all the information I needed. I enrolled; and my career path changed in both instances. The positive consequence of “asking” for things applies to many other life areas I take initiative in. I just ask, and the universe responds in amazing ways. Sometimes I “ask”, but I’m denied only to find out later that something better was arranged for me.

 Hesitation to ask for something may have bases in the “fear of failure” (rejection can be a killer sometimes). “How can I courageously imply to that cute girl/guy that I like him/her? What if s/he said no?” That’s a dilemma many face. “How can I ask for that raise? Surely Management is working within a tight budget!” Truth is, don’t ask for it, and you stagnate. Would you want to wait (maybe forever) until your number is called out? Your chances are inevitably 50-50 to get it or not; despite your apparent strong belief (100%) you won’t get it. You don’t have all the “givens”. You have to be clairvoyant to forcefully say you know it all, don’t you? Alternatively, hesitation may have bases in the “fear of success”. You’d reason: “Me, with that cute guy/girl!” (Good God! a relationship would be too overwhelming), or “Me, with a better salary, or finally granted that promotion!” (I could be envied, or it could be too much to handle). This is when some self-sabotage to remain in their habitual comfort zone. Success seemingly carries with it an extra toll. Many would worry about change; it’s too much of an effort!

It probably is a known fact, by now, that any type of fear can be overcome only if faced. And if you still have doubt about what could happen IF so and so took place, ask yourself: so what? What could it mean? We tend to take things too seriously, so lighten up a bit. Talk about your concerns loud enough by taking the worst extreme scenario. Is it the end of the world? Can I try something different if this or that didn’t work out? Surely, choices are plenty if only we look hard enough. Again, and quoting my inspirational presenter “If you don’t ask, the answer is always: NO!” You ask, and it’s either a Yes, or a No. A “Yes” grants you what you want. A “No” needs to prompt you to ask again for something different. This is how you brighten up your future; this is how you leave your options wide open; this is why I believe: “The future belongs to those who ask!

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