By Dr. Janet Brill
Health should be the priority of each and every person. Maintaining good health requires effort and control in terms of the food that we eat, the right amount of exercise, the proper diet, and having balanced nutrition. It is never easy for a person who has an illness or a health diagnosis to open up and to communicate about their condition. It is one of the hardest situations that a person will be able to face since it is inevitable. Dealing with this type of situation in life requires a lot of courage which is why there are proper ways in which you could talk to a friend or a loved one who has health conditions. You should be able to approach them in ways that would not be uncomfortable and give them guidance all throughout.
No matter what age, there are two types of people; some want to talk about their health while some would rather keep their conditions to themselves.
Keep in mind that a person who wants to talk about or open up about their health, whether it is their mental condition, overall weight, illness, and any other topics that are related to their health, takes a lot of guts to do. Deep down, you might feel shocked and uncertain, but on behalf of your loved one do not show that you are scared. Show them that you are concerned and that you are willing to listen to whatever they will say instead. Any kind of crisis in health has a huge impact on their life and it can be frightening, but what is important is that you will be there for them. This is the part of their life where they need immense support, especially from their friends and loved ones. It is your duty and responsibility to show it and act on it. Give them words of encouragement on a daily basis and make it your goal to keep them happy with whatever challenge they are facing in life.
Find the right time to communicate where both of you are not distracted, in a rush, or stressed. Consider inviting them for coffee wherein he or she will be able to discuss their concerns and your concerns at that time. Communicating at coffee shops tend to be relaxing and enjoying a cup of coffee while talking about life or any private information helps us remain calm. There are many benefits of trying out coffee syrup flavors to suit your current situation and mood since caffeine helps improve focus, calmness, and it helps a person become more optimistic.
It is very important for you to listen and to let them finish their thoughts and complete their sentences without the urge to interrupt. Only respond once they have finished letting go of their feelings inside and have stated everything that they need to say. You should be able to let them know that you understand and make them feel that they are not alone in this journey. Focus on their needs by taking them and your conversation seriously. Do not be judgmental; value what they are going through by validating their feelings.
It is a big relief for a person who wants to talk about their health to someone who is understanding and respectful. Situations like this are not solved with just one conversation so make yourself available to talk whenever they need you. Let them know that they can always reach out to you whenever they need someone to talk to or if they are having a hard time.
Remember to be thoughtful and sensitive with the way you approach them and when stating your own words especially if the subject matter is painful or a secret that they have been keeping for a long time. Speak about your concern regarding their health and give them proper advice. In addition to this, offer lots of empathy and compassion. Tell them that you only want what is best for them and, of course, seeing them live the healthiest and happiest life possible. Your discussion should revolve around support and help which is why you should ensure that you are trustworthy and you will help them get the care that they need.