As we approach R U OK? Day on Thursday September 8, it is fascinating to reflect on the journey we have been on.

When Gavin Larkin and a small team of us first launched R U OK? in September 2009, we did some research to understand why people felt reluctant to ask someone they were concerned about if they were OK.

At that time there were two main reasons given for this hesitancy:

  • I don’t know how to start the conversation, and;
  • I’m concerned they may admit they are not OK, but I don’t know what to do.

This led to us setting up the 4 step conversation process:

  1. Break the ice, and then ask “Are you OK?”
  2. Listen without judgement
  3. Encourage help seeking action
  4. Follow up

We are all absolutely delighted with how R U OK? has grown in reach and impact, and I know that Gavin (who tragically passed away from cancer in 2011) would be smiling down from above as he observes the growth.

Despite this growth, I still think many of us are unprepared, on knowing what to say and do if someone answers R U OK? with “No”.

These are my suggestions:

I CARE: 5 Ways to Help a Stressed Workmate


7 rituals poster 4 blog









This GREEN ZONE boost tip relates to ritual 6 – ASK R U OK? – from the 7 Rituals of Resilient Leaders.

Your organisation may be interested in experiencing the 7 Rituals of the Resilient Leader Workshop –    Sign up for our free poster and course to learn how to create rituals that improve your resilience, mood, and performance.