Are you OK?

There are two questions I use more now than I used to. They are ‘are you OK?’ or ‘how are you?’

It’s not that I didn’t ask people around me these things before, and it’s not that I care more now than I used to. It’s just that it seems so much more important to ask my friends, family members, and colleagues now, over 12 months since the UK first went into Covid-19 lockdown.

So, here’s the question … ‘are you OK?’

It’s not a loaded question, designed to force you to reveal information about yourself you’re not comfortable or willing to reveal. It is merely an opportunity to choose for yourself.

Do you say ‘yes, fine thanks’ and move the conversation on? Do you say ‘not bad, have been better’ and see where the reply takes the conversation? Or do you reply with the truth and let it all out, the good and the bad?

Each of us chooses to reveal ourselves in a different way to different people. Some of those people are more trusted, some of us will be more wary around others less ‘trusted’. And that’s all fine.

Stress Level Chart

The above infographic has been shared a few times, and it’s one I’ve returned to on a number of occasions – ‘How are you doing?‘ From ‘thriving’ to ‘in crisis’ it covers a whole range of physical and emotional issues that have affected nearly everyone over the last 12 months or so. We will be affected differently each day, depending on a whole range of factors and influences, but the question remains .. ‘are you OK?’

The question is a simple one. The answer, however, may be more difficult than you think when you ask or are asked.

Photo by Daniel Cheung on Unsplash