Help Yourself

Adrian S. Potter
3 min readAug 6, 2021

You can’t count on others to do it for you.

Photo by lalesh aldarwish from Pexels

The Secondhand Inspiration Project begins with a motivational quote and ventures wherever the creative path meanders.

“Stop blaming people for not helping you to solve your problems. The question is simple ‘are they the ones in the problem with you?’ People may teach you, people may advise you, people may inspire you, but it takes YOU to go the extra mile and make an indelible impact!” — Israelmore Ayivor

This quote reminds me of something which seems obvious to many but foreign to many others — self-help requires you to help yourself.

So many people remain listless, expecting somebody else to do the dirty work required for their growth and goals. It is a contagious version of laziness that infects more of the population than it should. I am perpetually amazed by how some folks do little or nothing when there are incredible opportunities around them.

The truth is that nobody will ever be near as committed to your purpose as long as you can remain focused.

Co-workers, close friends, and relatives will invest your success to varying degrees. However, they will never be pot committed (to steal a poker term) to go all-in on your goals like you. And why would they be? It’s your life, not theirs. If you are not willing to put in the sweat equity, how can you expect someone else to care?

Of course, we all need assistance at times. We rely on others for mentorship, a helping hand, sound advice, or a timely recommendation. But you cannot solely depend on others to come through for you in the clutch. If you do, you will inevitably be disappointed.

This reminds me of an anecdote from comedian Chris Rock. In an interview, he mentioned how he used to own crappy cars in his younger days due to a lack of money — something quite familiar to me.

A common side effect of driving a junker is ending up on the side of the road when it breaks down. About this scenario, Chris said, “When I stood there trying to flag someone down, nobody stopped. But when I pushed my own car, other drivers would get out and push with me. If you want help, help yourself — people like to see that.”

Adrian S. Potter

Antisocial Extrovert · Writer and Poet, Engineer, Consultant, Public Speaker · Writing about self-improvement, gratitude, and creativity ·