When we look at the list of things we have to do — the projects, tasks, and chores of everyday life, both personal and professional — we often get so caught up in the list, that we never think that there might be a better way.

Lisa and I brought our daughters Kaylie (3 years) and Abigail (3 weeks) over to my Aunt Karen’s house on Saturday for a family gathering. The drive over was a little “challenging”. Abby picked the most inopportune point in the ride to start howling about how hungry she was. Kaylie’s complaints were a little more sophisticated, but even less easily met (she wanted to go to Disney World). By the time we reached my aunt’s house, Lisa and I were feeling a little fragile — especially when we considered that one or the other of us would be carrying Abby during the party.

As we pulled up, though, my sister-in-law and aunt met us at the front walk. By the time we got inside, Abby had been spirited off to be held by just about everyone at the gathering and Kaylie ran off to the basement where the older cousins were overseeing the play area for the other kids. Suddenly, what would have been an event full of our responsibilities, with the help of our loved ones, became a relaxing afternoon full of good food and adult conversation.

How wonderful.

This same thing happens in our lives everywhere. We focus on those things we have to get done — sometimes skipping our networking in order to accomplish them. Every once in a while, though, we happen to mention our challenges to our networking partners. Suddenly, they are galvanized into finding a way for us to come out ahead. They have advice, referrals, and recommendations. If we care to listen to them, we just might find our burden lifted.

So, my challenge to you is to take a few moments right now to figure out what areas are currently on your radar where you might need some help.Then the next time someone asks about your challenges or goals, you can actually tell them. Who knows? That problem that was weighing you down might just be the thing which makes your connections stronger.