R U OK? …. is a national awareness campaign aimed at caring for the welfare of those we either do life alongside, or those we may encounter in our everyday lives.
In this fast paced life countless thousands are actually struggling and this campaign is designed to help us “care” and then offer help if help is needed.
Slowing down, walking a little slower through the crowd, being mindful of others, allowing yourself to make eye contact and being bold enough to ask the question, could literally save someone’s life. So here are some simple tips from the R U OK website: www.ruokday.com
– You don’t have to be an expert to support someone going through a tough time. You just need to be able to listen to their concerns without judgment and take the time to follow up with them. Here are some simple steps to start a conversation.
1. ASK R U OK?
Start a general conversation; preferably somewhere private.
Build trust through good eye contact, open and relaxed body language.
Ask open–ended questions
‘What’s been happening? How are you going?’
‘I’ve noticed that… What’s going on for you at the moment?’
2. LISTEN without judgement.
Guide the conversation with caring questions and give them time to reply.
Don’t rush to solve problems for them.
Help them understand that solutions are available when they’re ready to start exploring these.
‘How has that made you feel?’
‘How long have you felt this way?’
‘What do you think caused this reaction?’
3. ENCOURAGE action.
Summarise the issues and ask them what they plan to do.
Encourage them to take one step, such as see their doctor.
If they’re unsure about where to go to for help, help them to contact a local doctor or other health professional.
‘What do you think might help your situation?’
‘Have you considered making an appointment with your doctor?’
‘Would you like me to make an appointment or come with you?’
4. FOLLOW UP.
Put a note in your diary to call them in one week. If they’re desperate, follow up sooner.
Ask if they’ve managed to take that first step and see someone.
If they didn’t find this experience helpful, urge them to try a different professional because there’s someone out there who can help them.
‘How are things going? Did you speak with your doctor?’
‘What did they suggest? What did you think of their advice?’
‘You’ve had a busy time. Would you like me to make an appointment?
Why not pass this information on and lets believe that many will find help this week. And if you personally dear friend are not okay, be sure to put your hand up and let friends or family know.