Can I/May I Help You?


Can I help you?

Normally, someone might correct you when you ask “can” instead of “may” in regards to offering assistance, but I might argue that “can” is the correct word to use in this case. You don’t actually know if the person you propose this inquiry to is going to need help or if you actually have the power to officer assistance to fix their problem. So, while “May I help you?” is considered more appropriate, “Can I help you?” is probably much more accurate in answering somebody’s call for something we all need at some point in our lives.


We are not alone in this world, and we cannot do everything that needs to be done in our lives and the world on our own. We need help and to help others in order to progress and move on in this world. They are also necessary for our own personal and professional growth. However, helping and asking for help are not always as easy as they may seem.

Offering help is pretty simple, though.

We should always strive to be a little kinder in this world. Too often are we trapped in our own selfish bubble that we forget that others are not as fortunate as we may be. People need other people to help lift them up and carry them through the rough times in their lives. Helping others is just being a good citizen of the world.

Being helpful is also a very employable skill to have in one’s arsenal.

As soon as you enter the working world, it’s very likely you have to answer questions such as “May I help you?” or “Can I take your order?” in a job for whatever company deems your lack of experience worthy of a first time employment. It prepares you for a lot in life because it asks you to be prepared in the knowledge of whatever career you find yourself in. When a customer approaches you with an inquiry or if you notice someone needs help, you must learn to have the appropriate knowledge to best assist them. You must also learn how to help sometime kindly and without punching them the face when they are screaming in you.

Customer Service: the most educational career for learn how to deal with mean people without getting arrested.

Learning how to be helpful is absolutely important for a number of reasons, both professionally and personally, but learning to ask for help is equally as imperative for growth and a hell of a lot harder a skill to master.

Asking for help is admitting fault and ignorance. Seeming weak is something most people will do anything to avoid. No human is perfect, so we shouldn’t be ashamed to ask for help in doing something we are struggling with.

Still, we do not have as easy of a time asking help as we do offering it.

Unfortunately, I am one of the worst at admitting when I need help with any given task, professionally or personally. For me, it’s a mixture of independence, social anxiety, and perfectionism that typically keep me from admitting defeat in my own ability to do a job. I’m a perfectionist. I love feeling confident in becoming an expert in whatever job I have. However, I know perfection is an ideal that isn’t a real thing.  Everyone struggles with something, and we need to remember that when asking and offering help in the things we have to do in our lives.

So, here is my attempt at opening up and asking for help.

I need help in being willing to ask for help. I need help in learning how to be okay with admitting any sort of fault in my ability to complete a task without some sort of guidance. I need to ask for assistance when I’m not skilled enough to overcome an obstacle on my own.

I need help.


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