It has been a difficult few months and with so much uncertainty in the world right now it is normal to feel anxious and overwhelmed. ‘R U OK’ Day is coming up next month as a reminder to check in on your mates – but what about checking in on yourself? What if you are struggling?
It can be hard to know how to start a conversation with a friend, especially when you are the one asking for help. Below we outline some simple steps to follow if you need to reach out to someone and aren’t sure how to.
First, it helps to know what you are hoping to achieve out of the conversation. Do you just want to be reassured that your mate is there to support you? Do you want them to help you make an appointment to speak to a professional? Do you need them to help you have a conversation with someone else about it e.g. a parent? Having a goal in mind will help guide you through your conversation.
You need to be prepared with what you want to say. Think about how you might bring the conversation up in a way that will make you feel as comfortable as possible, that way you will be less likely to change your mind! Finding a natural way to bring it up in conversation will help you to stay calm and focused.
It can be really daunting to think about sitting across from someone and discussing your feelings. Think about raising the topic while you are doing something else – going on a drive, watching a game on TV, fishing or cooking together! Something that means you will be side by side with your mate can really help to ease anxieties. There is also the option of broaching the topic online or in a text or phone call. Sometimes it can be easier to start these sort of conversations oPreview (opens in a new tab)nline and then meet up afterwards.
Finally, actually start the conversation! Think of an opening line and go for it. Maybe try ‘I haven’t been feeling like my usual self lately and I wanted to talk to you about it’.
If you are struggling or need to speak to someone please remember that TABMA is always here to chat. You can call your Field Officer or anyone else on the TABMA team and we will be able to assist. Whether you are looking for a confidential chat or need to be put in touch with a professional who can assist you TABMA can help.
Lifeline 13 11 14
Kids Helpline 1800 551 800
MensLine Australia 1300 789 978
Beyond Blue 1300 22 46 36
Headspace 1800 650 890