Talking to someone, whether it is about your own wellbeing or to check-in with someone else, is a positive action for mental health.
If you’re not sure how to start the conversation, read on for our tips.
Talking about your own mental wellbeing
This could be a friend, family member or colleague. However, it doesn’t need to be someone close to you. You might find speaking to someone that you don’t know, such as a counsellor or one of Racing Welfare’s Welfare Officers, to be just as beneficial.
Think about where you might feel most comfortable to speak freely. It could be at a quiet, private location, or perhaps outdoors on a walk.
The person you choose to talk to, particularly if you choose to speak to someone you know personally, might have a different reaction to what you expect. This might be because they are worried about you or don’t understand how best to help you. Try to give them time to process the information and provide further information to read if you can. Remember to be kind to yourself in these situations.
Talking to someone else about their mental wellbeing
Make sure you can have the conversation without being disturbed and give the person your full attention. It might help to switch off your phone.
Listening can be one of the most valuable ways to support someone. Show you are listening by facing them, making eye contact, not interrupting and asking relevant questions when necessary.
Try to the person directly how you can help them, rather than making suggestions or offering advice. They might need practical support, such as help around the home, or perhaps just a listening ear.
Keen to learn more?
Racing Welfare offers heavily subsidised mental health training to anyone working in the racing or Thoroughbred breeding industries. The two-day Mental Health First Aid (MHFA) course is an accredited training course that will teach you to listen, reassure and respond to anyone experiencing mental health challenges. The course will also help you recognise the signs and symptoms of poor mental health in yourself and in others.
Racing Welfare’s 24 hour support line enables people to access support and
guidance through digital and telephone options.