I almost called this post “Where’s Wally?” That’s because I’ve been very quiet here these past few months. That doesn’t mean I’ve been quiet generally though and I have a few things I’ve learned that I want to share with you…

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I’ve been doing quite a bit of mental health advocacy work these past few months, primarily to assist small business owners in Australia. I’ve been working with Beyondblue on their Heads Up program, specifically looking at  the development of resources for small business owners. I’ve also just completed a fantastic project with the Australian Tax Office assisting them to develop resources and information on how they can better support small business owners who may be facing mental health challenges. In addition, I’ve  been busy as a speaker talking about mental health for small business owners at various events in different states and if you think your organisation or group would be interested to hear more about the realities of small business ownership, you’ll find my details here.

One of the questions I am asked regularly when working on these projects is:

How do I get another person to seek help if I feel  they need it?

The reply is often tricky because the answer is “you can’t.” In fact, you can’t make another person do anything. They must choose it themselves. They must want to seek it out. They must feel it’s worthwhile pursuing. Therefore, a more apt question would be:

What can I do that might encourage another person to want to seek help if I feel they need it?

There are many things you can do to support someone in need. Perhaps the most critical is to create an environment where that person feels it’s okay to talk about their challenges without fear of criticism. Shared vulnerability builds trust and this means if you can create a space where people feel equal and safe they may be more likely to want to hear your advice.

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So, how do you go about creating that space, and where do you go from there? That’s going to be the subject of my next few posts (no, you won’t have to wait months to read them!). In addition, I’ll soon be sharing details about an exciting new project I’ve been working on. If you’re not following me on facebook at Fortitude at Work, I’d suggest checking it out to stay informed.

Meanwhile, have a fabulous remainder of the week, and thanks for having me back in your inbox. I appreciate it ♥♥♥