We can all feel distressed at some point in our life. It is a normal emotional response to very difficult situations, and when our ability to cope is put under extreme stress. The problem is that our culture doesn't allow us to show that we are struggling to cope. It is considered a sign of weakness. This means that we are less likely to ask for help. Without help, the situation could worsen leading to anxiety, depression and thoughts of suicide.
The #HeyAreYouOK? Campaign's mission is to promote a culture that teaches us to recognise distress and to talk about it openly and honestly; a culture that teaches us to ask for help without the fear of being stigmatised; and a culture that teaches us that sometimes we need to reach out to those we think may be finding life difficult to cope with. It doesn't take much. Simply asking #HeyAreYouOK? can make all the difference.
3-steps of #HeyAreYouOK?
Step 1: Look after yourself - Recognise when you are becoming distressed, find ways that will help you to cope, and know when to ask for help & support
Step 2: Look out for others - If you see someone needing help or in distress, ask if they are "OK"
Step 3: Offer help & support - If you feel able to, offer your help and support