You don’t need to be an expert to start talking about mental health or have all the answers. Sometimes the most helpful thing you can do is to let someone know that you are there for them and simply listen.
- Talk, but listen too: Simply being there will mean a lot.
- Take your lead from the person: As a first step, ask them how best you can help.
- Avoid the clichés: Phrases like ‘Cheer up’, ‘I’m sure it’ll pass’ and ‘Pull yourself together’ definitely won’t help – Being open minded, non-judgemental and listening will.
- Keep in touch: There are lots of small ways of showing support – Send a text or just ask someone how they are doing.
- Don’t just talk about mental health: Just be yourself, chat about everyday things as well.