Thursday September 10 is R U OK? Day, This is the day that R U OK? is calling on Australia to take the global lead in suicide prevention.

How can we lead? By having regular meaningful conversations with people who might be struggling.

Leaders strive to bring out the best in people, in the interests of improving performance in the workplace.

Leadership coaches strive to help people see purpose in their work and feel a sense of achievement.

But how often do we take the lead, and the time, to stop and simply ask a colleague, R U OK? And then be prepared to listen. How often, in the busy-ness of work, do we pause and tune-in to how a colleague is actually feeling? Most of us display give-away signs when we are struggling. Let this day remind us all about the value of meaningful conversations, all year.

Did you know? About seven people take their own lives every day in Australia? And 65 000 people attempt suicide every year? Suicide is the biggest killer of Australians under 44 years and men account for around 75 per cent of all suicide deaths in Australia.

R U OK? Day encourages people to take the time to ask ‘Are you OK?’ and then listen. This is a way to support those struggling with issues such as loneliness, depression and isolation, and prevent suicidal thoughts. Prevention and intervention are better than crisis support and postvention.

Can we not all take the lead and stop to ask R U OK? And then listen. Not just today, but any day that our support appears to be needed.

R U OK? is a not-for-profit organisation that aims to inspire Australians to have regular, meaningful conversations throughout the year to help anyone who might be struggling with life. R U OK?Day is a national day of action, held on the second Thursday of September each year.

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