Are you okay?

Written by rebeccah

Now more than ever it is important for us to stay connected with friends and family.

Make sure to check in with yourself and your loved ones this R U OK day!

But how do we ask if they’re okay?

Before you ask

It’s important to recognise whether you are ready to support someone else. If you’re not, that’s okay! Try to think of someone else who can check in on them.

Am I ready?

  • Am I in a good headspace myself? Will I be able to genuinely listen to them? Am I able to give them as much time as they need?

Am I prepared?

  • Do I understand that they might say they are not okay? Do I accept they might not be ready to talk about it with me or understand that I cannot solve their problems?

Picked my moment?

  • Is this somewhere safe and private? Would this be a good time for them to chat? Will we have enough time for a long conversation?

How to ask

Ask R U OK?

  • Remember to be friendly and calm.
  • Ask open questions like “How are you going?” or “What’s been happening?”.
  • Mention anything that has made you concerned for them such as “You seem less chatty than usual. How are you going?”.
  • If they are not up to talking, let them know that they can come to you whenever they’re ready or ask if there’s someone else they’d prefer to speak to.

Listen with an open mind

  • Don’t interrupt, rush the conversation or judge their feelings or experiences.
  • If they need time to think, be patient with them.
  • Encourage them by saying “how are you feeling about that?”.
  • Check you have understood what they’re saying.

Encourage action

  • Ask them if they have done anything in the past to manage a similar situation.
  • Ask them what support they need from you.
  • You can suggest they do an activity that they enjoy or suggest things that you know make you feel better.
  • If these feeling have lasted more than 2 weeks, suggest they seek support from a health professional.

Check in

  • Follow up with them later to see how they’re going – you could even set a reminder in your phone or diary.
  • Ask how they’ve been going since you last spoke and be open to their response.
How to ask someone if they are okay.

Providing genuine support and care for someone can make a big impact on how they feel. If you’re able to, check in on how your loved ones are doing this R U OK day.

Support helplines.

Find more of our health tips here.

Book in for an appointment here or call 9651 5559.


R U OK. How to ask r u ok?

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