There’s More To Say After R U OK?

Here at the Rec, we are missing the everyday connection we have with all of you, and the buzz of the centre as our community no longer bustles in and out of various classes, activities, kinder and childcare. We’ve all been impacted to varying degrees by the challenges 2020 has thrown at us and this long Melbourne winter – and what now looks to be spring – in lockdown.

But although isolation can make us feel that our connection has been lost, we need to try and remember that this isn’t the case – it’s there, it’s just different, and it takes a little more effort for us to remain connected with each other during these ‘covid’ times. We are smiling with our eyes more, making spoon villages, drawing chalk rainbows on the pavement and checking in with each other by zooming our way through our work days, school days and birthdays. The ways in which our communities have adapted to the ‘new normal’ is a good reminder that there are many ways in which we can stay connected and offer each other the support we may need, but not always be able to ask for.

With today being R U OK day, we thought we’d take this opportunity to ‘check in’ with our community. This year’s R U OK Day message is that “there’s more to say after R U OK?” By knowing what to say when someone tells us they are struggling, we can form deeper connections and be a stronger support.

There are 4 tips on keeping the conversation going:

1. Ask – R U OK? Have you noticed they haven’t been themselves? Are they withdrawn? Take the first step by asking the question.

2. Listen – keep an open mind and listen without judging or rushing.

3. Encourage Action – ask how they’d like you to support them, or what they’ve done in the past to manage similar situations. If they’re really down, do they need to see a health professional?

4. Check in – pop a reminder in your calendar to check in regularly to see how they’re going. Staying in touch and showing care and concern can make all the difference.

You’ll find more details on these tips plus resources and support tools at www.ruok.org.au.

And let’s keep up the eye smiles, the spoon villages, the zooms and stay connected as a community, at least until we can be together in person once again.

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