Yesterday I had to drive to the store and couldn’t find my keys. Of course, I used the Next Right Action worksheet to find them, but this note to myself is about a subset of the problem solving: the “call a friend” part. In this case, ask my wife, Jen. How to ask for help is a whole category of problems in itself and the key I have found is how the ask is made. Here are the hypotheses I formed for how to ask along with the Likely/Easy rankings.
“Do you have my keys?” (3,5)
“Have you seen my keys?” (5,5)
“You were the last person to use my truck, where are the keys?” (2,2)
“I can’t find my keys.” (8,9)
The first three press the urgency of finding the keys, but deliver some level of problem transference and responsibility to the person being asked for help. They could even be a trigger for offense. The last one also has urgency, but none of the transference or potential offense. It ask for help by stating my problem clearly and without blame or transference. I went with that.
Jen hadn’t seen my keys. I found them in the pocket of my pants yesterday. And avoided a fight. The fight wouldn’t have found the keys any faster.