Jules Sebastian on asking, R U OK?
Trigger warning: this article contains themes involving suicide and mental health. If you need help call Lifeline on 13 11 14 or Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800. More helplines are listed here
It’s a big week for mental health and suicide prevention awareness with R U OK? Day (9th September) and World Suicide Prevention Day (10th September).
The focus of R U OK? Day this year is to check in with someone and ask if they are really ok. Jules Sebastian, a philanthropist, self-confessed tea lover, mum of two and MOOD Ambassador, says
“We always encourage our kids to just say how they feel and talk about it — and nothing is off limits.”
Jules has recently shared her personal experience with suicide, mental health and the importance of communication during lockdown. With many people struggling at the moment, Jules’s message is a reminder to check in with people around you.
“just having a conversation with a family member or friend in lockdown times, on FaceTime and phone calls or walks with a friend — I find that once you sort of get it out of your body
"it all of a sudden becomes a much smaller problem when the load is shared.”
Supporting young people around mental health and suicide prevention is the purpose driving her commitment to youth mental health through her foundation, and MOOD charity partner, The Sebastian Foundation.
"I am a firm believer in the power of tea!"
Jules also believes tea is great way to bring people together and create connection. If you haven’t seen it already, check out her YouTube channel for her show Tea With Jules where she interviews well known Aussies over a cuppa.
She said, "I am a firm believer in the power of tea! There have been many moments in my life where the conversations that flow from sitting with a warm cup in hand, listening and speaking has been my saving grace.
“I love that Mood Tea is encouraging us all to stop, take a moment, boil the kettle and sip some tea, whatever your mood. My hope is that this ritual will lead us to picking up the phone or chat with our loved ones to share what’s really in our minds and hearts. These conversations save lives.”
All profits from MOOD tea will go to fund youth mental health initiatives that The Sebastian Foundation and our other charity partners, batyr and BackTrack support.
With R U OK? Day and World Suicide Prevention Day just around the corner, we have rounded up some tips to help you ask that big question "Are you ok?”
They aren’t always easy conversations to have, but harm prevention charity R U OK? has broken it down into four simple steps that could help change a life:
3. Encourage Action
4. Check in
They urge us not to wait until someone is visibly upset or in crisis. R U OK? suggests taking a moment to reach out to ask a friend how they’re really going, anytime.
For World Suicide Prevention Day 2021, Suicide Prevention Australia is shining a light on suicide prevention, focusing on creating hope through action.
Even if you don’t know what to say or do to support once someone tells you they’re not ok, there are some resources that may help. Check out R U OK? and Reachout.com for more information.
If life is in danger: Dial 000
Visit Lifeline: Dial 13 11 14
Visit Kids Helpline: Dial 1800 551 800
Visit Suicide Call Back Service : Dial 1300 659 467
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