Asking for what you need — my shortlist.

Alexis Tryon
My needs can feel like Bruce Nauman’s “Human/Need/Desire”. Photo credit: Ed Schipul

What do you need right now? Don’t just say “nothing” and go back to looking for Pokemon. I’m sure you need something. We all do.

Too often, I don’t define what I need. I walk around wishing my dream would fall into my lap. It doesn’t and I get frustrated. I get angry at the universe for not providing, and at myself for needing it to. I convince myself my need isn’t real or that I can figure it out alone. I keep my needs safely locked away, like a private hidden treasure.

As I started my Lagniappe Project, I’ve heard this problem echoed back from nearly everyone I speak with. You are excited to accept some help, but don’t don’t know what you need. I’m guilty of the same thing, so I decided it was time to get better. Much in the same way I am defining how I can help, today I’m defining what I need and sharing the results.

This part is hard. It feels overly vulnerable to tell others what I need, like I’m carrying a neon sign pointing to my weaknesses. I keep questioning whether my ask is too big, too selfish, or too obscure. But I’ve learned that community is a two way street — I need to ask, as well as give, to be a good member. So I’m learning to ask for what I need. If I know who to ask, thats great — I go straight there. Often I’m not sure, so I ask everyone I can to expand my luck surface area.

In the spirit of vulnerability and luck surface areas, here are the needs at the top of my list right now. If you can help, I’d love to connect.

September 2016*:

  • Introductions to museum or arts non-profits to discuss the future of Artsicle.
  • Opportunities to speak, which is one of my favorite activities. Topics range from founding to failure.
  • Introductions to startups I can add value to as an advisor.

What do you need?

*I plan to update this list with new needs over time, along with notes on help received and lessons learned.

Alexis Tryon

Written by

Doer, Maker & Enthusiastic Eater. Founder at Extra Yarn & Artsicle.

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