Sometimes we go through the motion of meaningless, cordial questions like, “How are you?” without actually caring about the answer. Along the same lines, people rarely answer this question truthfully, especially when going through a difficult situation. It’s important to know your friends well enough to be able to recognize that they’re in trouble. If your friend is in trouble, it’s important you go through these steps to help.
Step 1: Pay Attention to Warning Signs
You can be friends with someone for years and never know the things that they struggle with regularly. You may have a friend that is prone to depression or destructive behaviors and never even realize it. If you want to catch these types of things, you need to pay close attention. There are always warning signs. Notice changes in behavior that are unusual. You will pick up on things like this if you pay attention.
Step 2: Address the Potential Problem
Once you’ve noticed the warning signs, it’s time to address the potential problem. Sit down with your friend and point out the things that you have been noticing. Explain why these behaviors are unusual, and express your concern for their well being. Understand beforehand that your friend may not react well to your concern. Your friend may feel attacked or criticized. If there is not a good reaction, make sure to always keep your cool and help you friend to understand that you’re there for them if they ever need to talk.
Step 3: Take Time to Listen
At some point, even if it’s not during the initial conversation, your friend will want to talk to you about everything. When this happens, be there to listen. This isn’t a time for you to tell personal stories or try to be wise. You can read more about how to listen in situations like this in a variety of online articles. It’s a great resources for learning how to listen. If your friend came to you, then it’s time for you to take the back seat and listen to everything they need to say.
Do you care enough about your friends to pay attention to the warning signs and offer your time when there’s a problem? It’s important that you’re willing to go the extra mile for a friend in trouble. If you do not have the time or emotional strength to offer your friend, then suggest them getting some professional help to work through the situation. It’s also important to get professional help for any serious problem in life. However, even if professional help is sought, always offer your emotional support throughout the process. If your friends do get into some trouble with law make sure you take.
Brionna Kennedy is native to the Pacific Northwest, growing up in Washington, then moving down to Oregon for college. She enjoys writing on fashion and business, but any subject will do, she loves to learn about new topics. When she isn’t writing, she lives for the outdoors. Oregon has been the perfect setting to indulge her love of kayaking, rock climbing, and hiking.the proper steps to help them out.