with self-help tips - over a cuppa
Each year Samaritans runs Brew Monday on the January day that, in normal times, has been described as ‘blue Monday’, many people’s lowest day of a normal year. But instead of limiting it to one day, for 2021 we think we can make it an all year event.
Normally we’re out and about in our local area on Brew Monday handing out tea bags and leaflets and talking to people about the importance of discussing feelings. This year, sadly, we can’t do that.
So we want to use Brew Monday 2021 to encourage people to call anyone who might appreciate a call and have a chat over a cup of tea – and on any day, not just a Monday. Some may find it hard to have difficult conversations, so we’d also like to share our five ‘SHUSH’ listening tips to help people discuss tough emotional feelings.
Of course, it doesn’t have to be Monday, or a cup of tea, the important thing is to take time to really listen to another person and allow them to work through what’s on their mind.
The Samaritans ‘SHUSH’ tips are:
- Show you care. Focus on the other person, make eye contact, and put away your phone.
- Have patience. It may take time and several attempts before a person is ready to open up.
- Use open questions. Ones that need more than a yes/no answer, and follow up with questions like 'Tell me more'.
- Say it back. Check you’ve understood, but don’t interrupt or offer a solution.
- Have courage. Don’t be put off by a negative response and, most importantly, don’t feel you have to fill a silence.
The branch also has a self-help app on its national website at https://selfhelp.samaritans.org/