The first step in the L.A.R.K. method is to ask for and accept that you deserve what you want. This step is more difficult for most people than the listening exercise. Asking for what we want from our bosses (or lovers, or families, or mechanics) is a big step for many of us. Another step in the process is the realization that we actually deserve to ask for something and receive it. Talking with fellow personal assistants, I’ve found that they find this step to be very difficult to do. Asking for help, or asking for something like a day off from work or a raise, is torture to them.
If we pick our moments and don’t rehash the past or act out of resentment or resignation, we can ask for what we want and actually get it. I’ve done it, and the ceiling didn’t cave in on top of me. Like anything else, it just takes practice. We’ve spent so many years practicing being disappointed that it just takes a few times of being told yes before we start to believe we can have what we want. It really is that simple. Here’s an example:
Assistant: “I’d like to talk to you about scheduling my vacation time this summer.”
Boss: “I’m too busy right now. Just send me an e-mail.”
Assistant: “I’ll follow up with an e-mail so we have it in writing. And I’d like to confirm with you now that taking the week of July 4th off is all right.”
Boss: “I’m going to be on Leno that week, right?”
Assistant: “Yes, Leno’s people have confirmed, and I’ve already got your travel arrangements made. I need to make my own reservations so can you give me an okay on my days off?”
Boss: “As long as my stuff is set, that’s fine.”
Assistant: “Great! I’ll follow up with you by e-mail and make sure you have everything you need before I leave the office on the third.”
Using the L.A.R.K method, we’re retraining our mind to accept the new thoughts as true. I knew an assistant who literally had to stand up every day to eat her lunch. She didn’t have a real lunch break! She sorted the daily mail in mail slots (she worked on a large estate), and the only time she was “allowed” to eat was for that half hour while she sorted the mail. Asking to have a lunch break was too scary a thought for her, so she never did. I think she was in that job for five years before she finally left—that’s a lot of lunches. Was it worth it?
For more on the LARK method, order my book!!!