- Supporting distressed people can be rewarding as well as
challenging. In order to remain effective it is important that you pay
attention to your own needs and ensure you don’t become overwhelmed.
See session: 01- Key Principles in Supporting Students
- The process of supporting people is to help the person to work
through what it is they need to do to help themselves. You are not
responsible for the decisions they make; your task is to sit alongside
them and help them consider their options
- In order to support a distressed person you need to be able to have
some ability to reflect on yourself. It is useful to ask yourself:
- How do I manage when I’m distressed?
- How easy is it for me to ask for support?
- Can I talk about my feelings with relative ease?
- Do I trust people to listen to me without judgment?
- Can I tolerate someone being upset without trying to fix
- How aware am I about my prejudices
Consider how your responses to these questions might help you
sharpen your skills in listening and supporting someone who is
- Our ability to listen does improve by practicing the skills
detailed in this session. Remember they are skills, which can be
helpful in improving the connection we make in any relationship
- It isn’t wrong to be upset, sad, angry etc. by what we hear
sometimes. However it can be very important not to express strong
emotional responses to what someone is saying as this may well silence