R U OK? A Rant About Why This Is An Important Question But Shouldn’t Be Asked By Some People

Today is September 8 – R U Ok? Day.

For those of you that may not have heard about it, it’s a day for recognition, conversation understanding, and support. It’s a day for checking in with your friends, family, coworkers and asking the question ‘R U Ok?’. The concept is to generate a conversation with somebody who might actually not be okay, and prompt them to talk about what’s concerning them; what’s weighing them down; what’s making them feel sad etc.

It’s by facilitating this conversation that somebody might have a better opportunity for ‘opening up’ rather than continue suffering in silence and keeping their problem(s) to themselves, in turn creating more issues.

Whilst I think it’s good to create a national campaign and a social ‘movement’, I don’t think it’s something that should be predominantly advertised and spoken about on just one day. It’s a conversation starter that should be had on a regular basis, well, providing you’re a decent human being who actually gives a shit about other people. And no, asking somebody if they are okay, before commenting on their hairstyle or fashion choices doesn’t count.


Browsing social media today, all I saw were posts about it. Images like the one above and all these people on my feed were making comments about ‘asking the question’ and ‘having the conversation’; linking to the RUOK website, and using #as #many #hashtags #as #possible, because #socialmedia.

But there was one post I saw that really struck a nerve, and it went along the lines of:

‘R U Ok?’

‘Well, actually, no I’m really not, I’ve been feeling…’

‘Okay my work here is done’

‘But I haven’t even told you what’s wrong’

And I realised that there were actually a number of people making posts about this day, that immediately fall into that particular category. The people who want to portray an image of being socially / morally responsible and caring etc, but really just do it to look good and ensure they get enough likes for their own validation and self worth. They are the sort of people that ask the question without any actual interest or concern in how the other person is feeling (when sometimes I think they are the ones who should be asked the question… ‘R U OK? I’ve noticed that you’re constantly concerned with how many selfies you’re posting on Instagram, and I’m concerned that you have absolutely zero self worth, and instead are trying to find self worth and validation from countless numbers of absolute strangers on the internet… ‘

Millennials and social media narcissists… I’m look at you!

Personally speaking, I’ve also found that a number of the people publishing these posts are also the people with the biggest gossipy mouths, so are automatically the WORST people to be having such sensitive conversations with, because that then works to their advantage within their social circles, and gives them plenty of gossipy ammunition with which to talk about you behind your back.

And for anybody that has previously, or is currently, going through a tough time, having people talking and gossiping about you behind your back is only going to make things worse.

Let’s pause for a moment. Could this sense of hostility possibly be coming from previous personal experience? Perhaps? 

Could it be based on observation of actual human behaviour within certain social circles? Absolutely.

Do I perhaps have trust issues with people from previous experiences? Undeniably.

Could this be making me sound quite biased? Shut up – nobody asked you!

To avoid any confusion moving forward, I’ll openly admit that I don’t currently classify myself as okay.

I M NT OK. 😕😩😞

#HotMess #WhereDoIBegin #WhatIsWrongWithMe #Numb #DeadInside

So there I am, sitting at my desk watching these posts pass through my newsfeed and each person that mentioned RUOK? I asked myself whether I could (a) comfortably open up to them about what is on my mind, (b) could I actually trust them enough to have a REAL in depth conversation with me about what’s wrong, or (c) would they just pass the buck and be like gurl, you just need to go see a #shrink or something, because you are #BatshitCrazy which completely defeats the purpose of the whole concept.

I’m not denying that there aren’t people in my life that I could open up to, but I’m not entirely sure I could trust them with the information that I would be divulging. Should I maybe go see a professional instead? Absolutely. However, that shit is ridiculously expensive, and it’s a luxury I simply cannot afford right now.

I, for one, can confidently say that if I ask you if you’re okay, I’m genuinely concerned about your response. I care about your wellbeing. Even if we might not necessarily be close friends. Sometimes you mind find it’s actually easier to speak to somebody outside you’re social circle, or working environment / industry, to be able to listen to what you have to say, and then be unbiased about it. Sometimes we need somebody to play Devil’s Advocate. Sometimes it’s easier to open up to a stranger. If you ever feel like something has got you down, I’ll always make time to hear you out and provide support, and know that whatever is said between us will remain between us. Shoot me a message and I’ll organise a time to talk!

I care about those suffering from mental illness. As somebody diagnosed with Depression and Anxiety, I completely understand anybody who says they’re having a rough time, or they’re feeling depressed or sad etc. I sympathise because I’ve been there. I’ve hung out with the Black Dog a number of times before, and am currently hanging out with him.

For anybody that is serious about asking somebody R U OK?, I would highly recommend watching this video before hand to be more consciously aware of what you could potentially be getting yourself into. Having somebody trust you enough to really open up for you is more than just unwrapping a bandage and showing you a wound; it’s breaking the stitches and cutting through the scar tissue to really get into it in depth. This is something that makes the person feel extremely vulnerable; baring their soul. For the person asking, it can become an extremely uncomfortable and confronting position to be in so I would suggest you make sure that you’re committed and ready enough to ask the question, because it’s so much more than just asking the question. It can open a can of worms and show you a completely different side of somebody that you never thought existed, but they need to know that you’re there to support them no matter what.

We all need to feel supported, especially at our most vulnerable.

So please don’t just let RUOK? be a question reserved for one day of the year. Don’t let it be the reason you’re trying to get attention and likes on social media. Ask the question on a regular basis, but actually mean it when you ask. Pay more attention to the people around you, and if you notice a change in behaviour, don’t ignore it. Confront it.

It could be nothing. Or it could be something .

It could change a life. But not asking could cost a life.

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17 Nov – Controversial

What is the most controversial thing you’ve ever written on your blog? What compelled you to write it?

 

I often find myself holding back from writing my true feelings on here, which is kind of stupid, because the people who actually know me, and know that this is my blog, really shouldn’t be surprised when I choose to voice my opinion.
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18 June – It Grew From A Comment

If a comment is getting too long, do you turn it into a post on your own blog? Point us towards a post that grew out of leaving a comment.

I haven’t as such created a post that grew from a comment.

I have, however had a couple of posts that grew from a simple idea and that really snowballed out of control.
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5 June – Ignoring Comments

Are there any comment sections online that you refuse to read?

Generally speaking I usually avoid comments sections because past experience has shown me that a) there are too many basic bitches out there who don’t understand what comment sections are actually for; and b) there are some ranty bitches out there who feel compelled to go out of their way to write a mini thesis on something completely unrelated.

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Another Milestone…

365 posts

Since November 2013 I have now passed 365 posts… that’s a year’s worth of posts in 6 months. I can’t believe that it’s already happened. I remember getting excited when I first got to 50 posts, and then 100, and I remember writing something like 20+ posts in the space of a few days and got to 300 and thought it was absolute MADNESS. I actually didn’t realise that I’d written this many, as the last dozen or so I’d just written on my phone whilst in transit to and from work, and I hadn’t noticed. YAY!!

This makes me happy. This tells me that I have a lot to say, and that I have a lot more to say, and I’m glad that I get to share it now with everybody, so THANKYOU to everybody who has been following my randomness and my ranting and my handful of creative pieces I’ve written… it really means a lot to me that anybody is even taking the time to read it in the first place…

Here’s to another 365 posts!!

One Of Those Days

Have you ever had one of those days?

Those days where for some unknown reason, everything seems to turn to absolute shit, and by about lunchtime you regret getting out of bed, and wish you had’ve just stayed there.

I’ve only been up for a whole 25mins, but I’m already regretting it.

It started with me throwing my eyelids open as I lay in bed, shouting out a long and panicked FFFFUUUUUUUCCCCCKKKKK!!!! see it was 7:59am, and I should have already been halfway to work. That, and my alarm went off at 6:30am!!

…great. Ugh.

I think I then got ready in the fastest possible time in the history of, well, ever, because I was dressed and out the door within minutes. I double checked my bus options and powered down to my alternate stop and caught the bus.

…which was like stepping into a sauna.

Turns out the heater on the bus is on. Mainly because the driver turned it on, and then accidentally broke the switch, so he can’t turn it off. So now we’re all sweating like pigs. Oh did I mention there are no opening windows on this bus??

…awesome.

Oh, and to add to this glorious start to the day, the bus is full of teenagers.

*cue loud groans of frustration and over the top eye rolling*

At this precise moment I contemplated getting off at the very next stop, but then that would require waiting another 18mins for the next bus, and at this rate, I’d be lucky to make it to work by 9am.

I don’t think you can possibly imagine how much I cannot stand teenagers in general. They’re just so… Feral. Blocking the aisles, being loud and abusive, climbing over seats, hitting and punching each other…. And that’s just the girls. It’s like these kids have just been collected from some kind of uncivilised remote island and they’re being let loose in society for the very first time.

They remind me of that scene from Planet of the Apes where the apes break free and go wild and terrorise the city… That’s what they’re like.

And I’m pretty sure they’d love to fling handfuls of their own shit at each other.

All I wanted was for the bus to crash and explode and end my misery. Not literally of course… But fuck, just get me off this bus ride from hell!!

Bus arrives at the train station, and then all of a sudden the fresh air hits me like a slap in the face! Ahhhhh what a relief!! I make my way through the station to my platform and when the train turns up, I choose the carriage, walk through the doors and instantly regret it, and weigh up whether I have time to jump off and race to the next carriage before the doors close.

Why?

BECAUSE SOME DIRTY FUCKER CANT CONTROL THEIR BOWELS AND FARTED ON THE TRAIN JUST BEFORE THEY GOT OFF!!

You bastard!!

10minutes later, the stench is still there, lingering just long enough to piss everybody else. One woman pulls out her ‘perfume’ and begins to spray it around her… Then like a series of dominoes, a few other ladies do the same.

It’s like walking into the perfume section of 😜Myer (big Aussie department store).

…sometimes I think I prefer the stench of an anonymous fart – only because now the train smells like candy-scented hooker which, let’s face it, is just as bad.

I get off the train, walk through the station and head down to the tram stop. Normally I’ll walk from the station to the office, but I’m running late today, so I’ll catch a tram. 2 minutes. Great.

So the tram turns up and it’s packed. Like, I’m talking packed. Sometimes I think we could give the Japanese a few tips on how to squash people onto public transport. I’m not sure what it’s like in other cities, but here in Melbourne, when it comes to people catching transport, particularly trams, they just seem to lose all sense of logic and rationale and become so completely fucking stupid. As a relatively normal person, if I see a packed tram coming towards me, then I know that I simply can’t get on it and just have to wait for the next one. Others, however, either completely ignore that fact, or treat it like a challenge. I think there’s enough room in the corner for one shoe, so that must mean I can get my entire 100kg+ body in there as well! because that’s clearly how it fucking works. Dude, just wait for the next one. These retards make my head hurt.

Needless to say, I didn’t get on the tram and had to wait for the next one.

Now I’m ten minutes late, I’m sweating in all the worst places and don’t have a change of clothes and I smell like a hooker… And I haven’t even gotten to the office yet… It’s not too late to turn around and just go home, right??

Daily Prompt: Fifteen Minutes

You have 15 minutes to address the whole world live (on television or radio — choose your format). What would you say?

So, does it have to be to the whole world? Can’t it just be to my country, or even better, my own city? I don’t want to have to rant on for 15 mins to the world – it’s too political. Granted, there are a number of topics I could rant about: war, politics, hunger, money etc but it’s basically too much for my brain to handle right now.

…so instead I’ve decided to address the people of Australia. The community of people who catch public transport.

**COMMUNITY SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT**

Alright you bunch of fuckwits, it’s time you had a Transport Education, or as I’m going to call it, a Transpucation.

There seems to be a number of people who still don’t seem to have grasped the basic fundamentals when it comes to catching public transport, and how to conduct ones self whilst on public transport, so here are six (6) tips to remember when you’re out and about:

1. Use common sense.

Now, it would seem that when it comes to public transport, most of you don’t seem to actually have any common sense. Or, if you do, you don’t use it. For example, if you are travelling during peak hour and your bus / train / tram happens to look like this:

…so much space!

then it’s best for everybody if you just accept that this one is not available, and you have to wait for the next one.

There’s no harm in suggesting that people ‘move down’ the aisles in order for others to actually get on board. Public transport will only work efficiently if the people travelling on it are efficient as well. However, you also need to be mindful that generally speaking, people don’t like being told to do anything, let alone asked anything. You may as well be asking them to give you a kidney.

Now, if you are waiting at a stop / station and your transportation arrives with people squished against the doors and windows like this:

your first reaction should be:

Oh well, this one is too crowded, I’ll just wait for the next one.

instead of:

LOOK AT HOW MUCH ROOM THERE IS FOR ME!! I’M SO TINY AND TAKE UP NO SPACE AT ALL, I’LL JUST SLIDE ON IN AND I WON’T IRRITATE ANYBODY ELSE AT ALL.

This is something that I see multiple times per day.

It really shouldn’t be so difficult.

What exactly is it about all the people sandwiched in like sardines that makes you convince yourself that there’s enough room for you on there? Seriously, what is it? I am also in the process of developing a medical team to diagnose this problem and working on either medication for it and / or a surgical response. This will hopefully be up and running by mid-2014. Initially we will be looking at appointing a team of surveillance officers who will be responsible for identifying these individuals and report them for a review.

Also, if you’re one of the people who’s decided to stand in the doorway, you need to realised that you are obligated to actually move out of the way everytime the train / tram stops, in order for other commuters to leave the carriage. This requires you to physically exit the carriage and patiently wait on the sides next to the door, allowing the passengers to disembark without interruption, and then you can re-enter the carriage, take up a (now) available seat, and continue on your merry little way.

2. Bags on seats

For all of you out there who catch transport, especially during peak-hour, who of you has gotten on a bus / train / tram that’s already packed, only to find that there’s a free seat with somebody’s backpack / shopping / handbag on it?

I thought so.

Now, have you then gone one step further and politely asked that person to move their bag so you, or a fellow traveller could sit down?

Nice.

And did that person:

  1. Groan
  2. Roll their eyes
  3. Act as though you’ve asked them to shave their head and it’s now the end of the world
  4.  All the above, -OR-
  5. Tell you to go fuck yourself.

?!?! Anybody? Are any of you guilty of this yourself?

‘Excuse me, duck lips… does your bag have it’s own ticket??’

Right, so let’s make it perfectly clear – and I’m definitely talking to all the school students out there – BAGS DO NOT BELONG ON SEATS!! The basic rule of public transport is this:

if it doesn’t have a ticket, it doesn’t get aseat

Now, I know that a vast number of you will have questions about this, but if you’re unsure, please don’t hesitate to contact the Public Transport Authority and they will happily explain it to you in further detail. If required, they can demonstrate using pictures.

3. Seats for elderly / injured / pregnant.

We’ve all seen them. They’re the seats right next to the door that are reserved for those who are:

  • elderly
  • injured
  • pregnant
  • disabled

Now, if you happen to be sitting in one of those seats, you are required to give up your seat for anybody who fits into that category.

Unless you prefer to be a selfish ignorant moll, like this woman.

It’s not that difficult. You shouldn’t need to be asked to move. You should be exercising you common sense (See Item 1.) and vacating the seat voluntarily. If you end up having an argument either with the person requesting the seat, or with a fellow commuter who might be yelling at you for being so selfish, then you need to STOP AND THINK about why they may possibly be upset with you.

meanwhile…Whatever you do, don’t ever, EVER take that risk in China…

And if you’re pregnant... the Pregnant Police are keeping tabs on you and your selfish shitbag behaviour. Nobody is impressed with you for yelling at the pregnant woman about how you ‘got the seat first’.

4. Music / phone conversations

Let’s start with conversations. Regardless of whether you’re having a conversation with a person next to you, or if you’re having a conversation with a person on the telephone, you need to be mindful of the other commuters around you.

WHEN YOU TALK REALLY LOUDLY LIKE THIS FOR A TWENTY MINUTE TRAIN TRIP INTO THE CITY, AND THE TRAIN IS REALLY QUIET, YOU MAY AS WELL JUST BE DOING THIS FOR THE WHOLE TIME:

Nobody, and I mean, nobody wants to hear what you have to say. Especially when you feel so obligated to discuss with your best friend, over the phone, the various sexual positions you and Bazza (the guy you went home with after your drunken night out last night after work) got up to. We don’t need to know what his cock’s like, and how sore your vagina is, or how many times you guys did it before you vomited on each other from too much motion.

It’s 8am in the morning. We’re all tired. Nobody is proud of you for being a drunken skank and going to work in the same clothes you wore yesterday. You’re a dirty whore and everybody is thinking it, whilst wishing you would just shut the fuck up.

MEANWHILE, for those of you who enjoy listening to music whilst commuting, that’s great. No doubt, you feel like this:

And that’s great. Keep your singing voice inside your head when you want to belt out some Celine Dion at 8am. However, please be aware that your fellow travellers might not have the same up-and-at-’em attitude that you might have. They may have other issues on their mind that have them worried or stressed, and the last thing they need to hear at 8am is a muffled nightclub blasting from your ears.

If others can hear your music, then it’s too loud.

5. Bikes / prams

Bikes / Prams + Crowded Train = NOT. A. CHANCE!

First of all, if you’re taking your bike on the train, doesn’t that actually defeat the entire purpose of having a bike in the first place?? Until such time as the Public Transport Authority decide to make a carriage dedicated to strictly bikes and prams, they do not belong on crowded public transport.

But what about those of you taking the to creche at work?

Well then you need to be more proactive in the way you approach this. We all understand that travelling with an infant requires a lot of additional equipment, clothes, blankets, wipes, nappies, bottle etc etc, but this can also be carried in a backpack. Alternatively, you can invest in a wearable baby-harness / pouch, or fold your pram up if you absolutely must use transport, to avoid your bulky pram blocking the ailes and doorways and inconveniencing fellow commuters.

and where exactly do you think you’re putting your bike / pram??

6. Keep to the left.

It’s that important, Beyonce wrote it into a song.

“…to the left, to the left…”

When you’re travelling to and from your transport at the train station, always tell yourself ‘to the left, to the left’.

When you’re taking the escalator? To the left, to the left.

When you’re on the stairs?To the left, to the left.

They’re supposed to look like this:

But for a majority of you, you seem to forget that some people actually don’t want to partake in the Line Ride. Some of us have places to be, and by keeping to the left, will allow us to move past the rest of you quickly and calmly.

However, it would appear that some of you don’t seem to know which is your left:

…which just sends people in to a table-flipping rage. This is quite inconsiderate for the other commuters behind you. So if you are one of these people, please don’t be offended when people start yelling at you to move, or trying to push you out of the way to get past. They’re impatient, but you’re also causing their frustration, so you only have yourself to blame. And if you’re blocking the right-side with a suitcase, please don’t be surprised if it gets thrown over the side. You should always keep a suitcase a step or two in front of you on an escalator. That way if it falls, it won’t pose an injury to anybody else but you.

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Daily Prompt: Cheering Section

Do you have a mentor? Tell us about him or her. Are you a mentor to someone else? Tell us what that relationship has added to your life.

Do I have a mentor?? ahh, no.

Just the thought of it brings about images of motivational / inspirational graphics basically saying “You can do it!!” “Be the most awesomest person you can be every day!” “Don’t ever let anybody stand in your way”… blah blah blah. 

I know that’s not generally what mentor’s are like, but that’s the first thing that pops into my head. Some kind of weird word-association that I have.

Have I been a mentor, myself? Yes. One of my jobs is as a fitness professional, so I’ve been a choreography and technique mentor to a couple of people, but I haven’t done so for a while now. A couple of people have approached me, but then haven’t followed through with it, so I guess they’re just not as serious as they initially were, or their interests have changed over time. 

Those whom I have mentored, have seen great improvement (sometimes dramatic improvement) in both their physical performance, and their execution of movement, which, in turn, has helped improve the performance of their class participants. For me, that’s really rewarding – to see such a transformation and know that I was responsible in helping them achieve that transformation.

I find it quite humbling.

I actually love the idea of being a mentor to people. Being able to see a potential in them, and then help them is something that I really enjoy. Coming from a dance background, I was always striving to be better. Better technique, better performance, better ability – and those are the same qualities I want (expect) from anybody I mentor. They’re approaching me because they want to improve.

However, I always tell them if they want to improve, they need to want it enough to want to put in the extra effort.

I’m not going to waste the little free time I have, on people who aren’t prepared to work. If you want to improve, you need to put in the effort to do so. You need to have the drive and desire for that change and improvement, otherwise, you’re just wasting your time, and mine. Even writing that, it sounds quite blunt, but that’s a reality that they are faced with. 

If you’ve been executing movement with incorrect technique and nobody around to help correct you, it’s going to take longer to retrain your mind and your body into the correct technique. 

…and this is the precise point that I jump on a tangent and go on a rant, so I’m going to stop myself.

 

Until next time…

 

 

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