It is always difficult to see somebody you love struggling in life, but you need to understand that you cannot change their situation for them overnight. As much as you might think you have all the answers, the onus is on them to make the changes they need.
However, you can still offer crucial support that will ensure they can change their situation. If you know someone going through a hard time, here are a few ways to help others help themselves.
Let Them Know You Are There
Oftentimes, merely being there for someone else can help them change their habits for the better. This should be your first step once you recognize that someone is not themselves. You can let them know that you are there if they want or need to talk, but you shouldn’t push the issue if they are not ready to discuss anything with you right now.
When the time comes, you might not have the answers for them, and that is okay. As long as you are there to hear them out, you can help them come to a decision all by themselves without needing to speak up.
Offer Solutions (But Don’t Force Them)
However, they might come to you to get a solution. If this is the case, you can look at their situation and offer ideas for them to pursue. Depending on the nature of their problems, Addiction Recovery, exercise, groups, and therapy can all be beneficial.
You can’t force particular solutions on them if they are not ready or willing to explore them right now. Still, these solutions are ones that they can keep in the bank for later and perhaps pursue them when they feel comfortable.
Do Not Enable Them
One of the worst things you can do to someone who is hoping to change their ways for the better is to enable them. This is because there’s a chance that they might play up some of their problems or even mask the severity, which could cause you to reconsider their situation. From here, there’s a risk you could unintentionally enable their behavior.
Rather than be someone who allows this to happen (even if you were not aware), you must try to put the tools for success in their hands, rather than guide them yourself. This is the only way they can help themselves, and you can be there if they need help.
Be a Role Model
Being a role model can often come across as “too holier than thou.” But, if your friend, partner, or relative has outwardly expressed a desire to change, you can demonstrate the benefits that this change will bring.
Being a role model can include a healthy lifestyle or a willingness to push for success in their career. It will also require you to show how effective discipline is, motivating them to change their behavior.
The change will be gradual, and there are sure to be setbacks along the way. Despite this, being there for your partner, friend, relative, or even co-worker can give them the motivation and confidence that there is more to life. With your support, they can achieve their potential, however long it takes.
Here at Psych Times, you’ll find a plethora of articles related to psychology, mental health, and overall well-being. Our goals are plentiful and include increasing the awareness of mental health, educating the public about why people think and behave the way they do, as well as helping to counteract the unfortunate stigma associated with mental illness.