Talking about emotions is tough.
How do you start?
The automatic answer to ‘how are you feeling’ is usually ‘fine thanks’. Where are you going with that?
Remember, anyone struggling with their own emotions will also be struggling with self-stigma. We may need to check in more than once.
Most humans are not brought up to talk about their emotions which can lead to negative thoughts not being challenged and a state of becoming overwhelmed.
The critical practice of building in non-negotiable windows of self-care to our daily routines is not taught. Therefore, we don’t build the mind muscle to challenge negative thoughts when they arrive. As our minds are built to amplify negative thoughts to keep us safe, we can lack the insight that we are becoming overwhelmed.
It’s easy to work on automatic pilot and not see our spiralling descent as we support everyone around us – work, family, community – whilst neglecting our own mind health.
It often takes someone else to notice the changes in us to start a conversation where we can be reassured, validated and supported to identify the help we need.
With the introduction of psychological safety in the workplace with #ISO45003, employers are more aware of the critical need for the health of their business to proactively train staff at all levels on how to look after their mind health.
With the arrival of #timetotalk today, many will be overthink – what to say and how to say it.
Having delivered training in this key area for over 15 years across multiple industries, one key tool I find useful is the 1 – 10 scale when asking how someone is.
“Tell me on a scale of 1 – 10, how are you feeling today”. They have to give you a number – not just say ‘I’m fine thanks’.
Their response can provoke a more authentic conversation.
If it’s low:
‘Looks like you are dealing with a lot right now. That must be exhausting. Can you share with me what’s going on for you?’
‘Tell me, is there something I can do for you to help you move closer to that 10?’
If the response is seven or higher: ‘It’s great to hear everything is going well right now’ – the fact you reached out to them will prompt them to have the confidence to approach you in the future if anything changes.
Before we can support others, we have to be in the right place.
So, ask yourself, on a scale of 1 – 10 – how are you feeling today?
Ask this everyday!
Contact me to discuss how I might be able to help you, help your business to grow a little more.