R U OK? is a hard question to get right! Here are 11 ways to improve your conversations.
OK, so I admit that I took 4 of these bikkies home yesterday for my inner circle to enjoy. A great excuse to have a heartfelt conversation:) Given conversation skills are a big part of our training programs, I thought I'd share some relational advice on connecting at a deeper level with those in your various circles
Tuning into someone to understand if they are okay involves a combination of observation, active listening, empathy, and genuine concern.
Here are 11 steps you can take to gauge someone's well-being:
Pay Attention: Be fully present when you are with the person. Put away distractions and focus on them.
Observe Body Language: Non-verbal cues can often reveal a lot about a person's emotional state. Look for signs of distress, such as slumped shoulders, facial expressions, or fidgeting.
Ask Open-Ended Questions: Engage in conversation by asking open-ended questions that encourage them to share their thoughts and feelings. For example, "How have you been feeling lately?" or "Can you tell me what's been on your mind?"
Listen Actively: When they speak, listen attentively. Don't interrupt or offer solutions right away. Sometimes, people just need someone to listen without judgment.
Empathize: Show empathy by acknowledging their feelings and expressing understanding. Say things like, "I can imagine that must be really difficult for you" or "I'm here for you, and I care about how you're feeling."
Reflect Back: Reflect back what you've heard to ensure you understand correctly. This also shows that you're actively engaged in the conversation.
Be Patient: Give them time to open up. Some people may need more time to feel comfortable sharing their feelings.
Offer Support: Let them know that you're there to support them in any way you can. Ask if there's anything specific they need or if they'd like to talk more.
Respect Boundaries: Be mindful of their boundaries. If they don't want to talk or share, respect their decision. Pushing too hard can be counterproductive.
Stay Connected: After your initial conversation, continue to check in on them periodically. Show that you genuinely care about their well-being.
Refer to Professionals: If you believe the person is in serious distress or experiencing mental health issues, encourage them to seek professional help and offer assistance in finding resources.
Remember that everyone is different, and some people may be more open about their feelings than others. The key is to create a safe and non-judgmental space for them to express themselves. Your genuine concern and willingness to listen can make a significant difference in someone's life.
We're here to help! Soft, social and emotional intelligence (human) skills can all be learnt and refined, so get in touch via www.relatus.com.au to chat more
Julia Palmer a respected Relational Strategist and Chief Executive of Relatus, helping you develop your relational capabilities to give you the human advantage.