Ahh, the age old tale of helpers..
I’ve written my fair share of up and mostly down on this blog.
Can’t live with them, can’t live without them.
So when I was invited to another #BetterMe session with Coach Pia – I knew I had to attend. I wanted to learn and have some insights. You see, I was beginning to doubt myself when it comes to my relationship with my helpers. I can’t seem to find an all around helper that stays and is competent. I was beginning to think that, maybe it was me. But then again, how come my yayas have stayed with me.
Get rid of the Malasakit or Solicitude expectation
Is there an English word for malasakit? Solicitude is the closest that I can come up with (Thanks to Google!) I’ve always assumed that everyone has malasakit. I was wrong. Coach Pia enlightened us that this rarely happens – why? Simply because we are employers. We are not relatives, not family, we do not have any blood relation whatsoever, so why have malasakit? Even if we tell them to treat us like family, they really won’t. This for me was kind of hard to accept because I naturally treat my helpers like family. I think it’s high time for me to start changing and this may help my relationship with them.
Asses what your Need is and Want and differentiate them
This was the biggest challenge for me because everything was a ‘want’ for me. I want my house to be clean everyday – all day! I know its impossible and I’ve accepted that fact already. So what I did was make a list of the things needed to be cleaned a) everyday b) every two days c) once a week and d) once a month. But still this list wasn’t followed. I made it a point to lessen the things to do everyday (I had to assess what was important), two (2) bathrooms, one (1) bedroom, one (1) kitchen and one (1) dining area. STILL it wasn’t followed. I had a hard time grasping why it can’t be done when in fact, my mom’s helper and all the previous helpers were able to do it in half a day! And then I realized – that she moved ever so slowly. It was like she was loving in slow motion. What my ‘wants’ were not her ‘need’ and since it was upon her discretion – gah, she’s the one deciding what can and can’t be done.
Give it three (3) years to asses the relationship
I personally would like to treat them like family. There are few who would reciprocate the gesture but most often than not, they don’t give a rats ass about us. To them, we are merely their bosses who pay for their salary. So the assumption that ‘we are family’ well – it needs to be nurtured. According to Coach Pia – the timeline to be able to consider them as family (and eventually helping them out) is three (3) years. That long – why? Because in that length of time – you will see if the helper is trustworthy and their real attitude. After that three year mark, you can start considering helping them long term. Coach Pia told us an inspiring story about her and her Yaya. It was so very inspiring! Her parents helped her Yaya out – and its rewards were more than double for her family. Yaya is now a UK citizen, Yayas kids are all employed and are earning very well. What is most rewarding is that – Yaya hasn’t forgotten about Coach Pia and her kids. Yaya would always send Coach Pia gifts. Imagine that! Yaya sending gifts to Coach Pia! Doesn’t that warm the heart?
So, there – I learned so many things. It gave me insights and additional knowledge. There were some points that I never considered that I should have considered. I remember Coach Pia telling us that she has this rule – that she won’t hire anyone below the age of thirty (30) – why? Simply because she doesn’t like to rear another child! Because a 30 year old – is more mature, would have experience and just needs to be guided as opposed to be taught. Coach Pia says this is the most ideal age, but then again – I can argue that I have hired helper over 30 and they’re still incompetent. I guess, swertehan lang talaga when it comes to house help.
My mom has told me that in her lifetime, she’s only had 4 helpers. One when she got married, another when we were born, another when we were in our schooling years and the current one when we just graduated high school. I guess she’s lucky that way. As for me – gosh, I think I’ve changed all around help more than 10 times since I got married last 2009! My mom would always tell me that helpers then and now are different. During her time, they were loyal and would work hard, nowadays she noticed that there is no loyalty and these helpers, with the first sign of hardship, would immediately want out!