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Free Speech Lesson

How to Talk to a Sad Person

In the New York Times several days ago was an article about how to talk to a sad person. During holidays we expect people to be happy and the New York Times recognizes that is not always the case.

What do you do when notice a person who looks sad?

Here are some tips.

1. Tell the person what you notice and ask if they’re sad.    It’s often a relief to a person that you notice.

2. Mildly ask them why. If they do acknowledge to feeling down, ask them why without being brash. It make take 30 seconds, 1 minute or longer for them to begin talking. Wait patiently without saying anything.

3. Sum up or reflect back what they said so they know you heard them and you understood.  This will show empathy.  Empathy means you understand what it must feel like to be in their situation.

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