There seems to be this unwritten rule in the tiny house world that before you can build a tiny house you need to successfully list the help of your dad. Whether they are contractors or accountants they seem to possess skills that come into play when you are out of ideas.

Let’s play a game. It’s called “Where’s Dad?” See if you can spot my dad in the random selection of photos below.

Dad Helping

My dad helped in almost every aspect of our tiny house build in some capacity or another. Sometimes he was grunt labor and other times he was mastermind. In fact, even though he lives states away he is more than happy to help out when he comes to visit. In fact, just a few weeks ago he was featured in our window installation video.

The point though is not whether or not you have a dad or whether or not you can rent my dad. The point is that along with the unspoken “dad rule” of tiny houses there is another – and perhaps more prevalent – rule that says “Thou canst have a D-I-Y house if one doth enlist help.” It is an age old decree but not one that is timeless. Rather, it is outdated.

One-time UCLA basketball coach John Wooden is credited with saying:

We’re all imperfect and we all have needs. The weak usually do not ask for help, so they stay weak. If we recognize that we are imperfect, we will ask for help and we will pray for the guidance necessary to bring positive results to whatever we are doing.

For so many of us, the idea of asking for help signifies we are dependent, weak, uncertain or unsure of what do to. It makes us feel as if we are not smart enough, good enough or worthy enough. Nothing could be farther from the truth. We all have gifts to share – time, talent, connections, insights, experience, skills, resources, hospitality. And most people love to share them. By not asking for help we are denying others the chance to express their skills. We can do so much more together than we can alone.

So why ask for help?

Sooner or later, you’ll have to ask.

The day will come when you need to ask someone for help. When building a tiny house that may come at the beginning when choosing a trailer or at the very end when it is time to tow it to its home. If you are an independent person those times may be awkward and uncomfortable. Practicing how to approach and ask others will make these scenarios a lot smoother.

Helping benefits the helper.

Helping makes people feel good. Remember that time you were asked to help your cousin paint the walls of her new apartment? Remember how you felt when the two of you stood back and admired the new hue? Why deny someone else of that warm feeling? Let people revel with you in the successes.

Not needing help is a form of conceit.

Self-sufficiency is not a moral strength, it’s just vanity. No one ever strengthened friendships and relationships by proclaiming: Look at me, I don’t need anything from anyone, aren’t I clever? It’s also a bit dishonest because everyone who has ever succeeded at anything has done so with a bit of help. Were you born talking? No. You even had to have help learning to do that. By nature we are interdependent with the world around us.

There might be a simple solution for your complicated problem.

No matter what part of the build I was one I never hesitated to talk to my dad about it. The problems I thought were complex he seemed to have an answer for. He is clever in ways I am not. I am clever in ways he is not. Together we were able to take multiple approaches and make the most wise decision.

Do you ever ask for help? Are you afraid to? What was the last thing you sought help for?