How to Help Others

There will be times within your friendships that you can see that someone is struggling or has been through something traumatic. Sometimes we want to know what to do to help and do not know where to even start and may feel “unqualified” to handle certain situations.

Ways to help

There are a few basic things to do to establish some boundaries for yourself and be helpful for your friend:

  1. Remember that you cannot do everything, do not take responsibility for fixing what is wrong. You cannot make someone else seek help or make big life changes.
  2. Don’t ignore what is happening because you may not be sure how to respond, often just communicating that is helpful.
  3. Listen and be supportive, really listening without judgement and without offering advice is often the most helpful way we can be there for others.
  4. Be honest with yourself about your limitations.
  5. Be honest with your friend, if you are unable to help, it is ok to redirect to someone that can.
  6. “Touch base” and encourage your friend to keep talking.