Today is R U OK? Day - an important day to mark in the calendar.
R U OK? Day aims to encourage and equip everyone to regularly and meaningfully ask: “Are You OK?”
If your gut says something’s not quite right with someone, chances are that they might need a bit of extra support from the people around them.
They might be acting a bit differently, seem to have a lot on their plate, or simply aren’t themselves.
Don’t ignore those signs, instead take some time to start a conversation.
One of the great things about asking “Are You OK?” is you don’t have to know the answers to a mate’s problems.
Nor do you have to be OK yourself, or feel particularly strong.
As long as you feel up to listening, not judging and just talking through stuff you have found useful in the past, you’ve everything it takes to have a meaningful conversation to support a mate in need.
If you're unsure how to start the conversation, try ALEC (A - Ask, L - Listen, E - Encourage action, C - Check in).
It is also important to ensure you are in the correct headspace before initiating conversation.
For more advice on 'how to ask' and for more information on R U OK? Day, click here.
If you or someone you know needs help, contact Lifeline on 13 11 14.