How to give support

Types of support

  1. receiving gifts
  2. quality time
  3. words of affirmation
  4. acts of service (devotion)
  5. physical touch

Ask for what you need

  1. Find a partner
  2. Describe something you’re struggling with
  3. Partner asks “How can I support you?”
  4. Ask for the kind of support you want in this moment
  5. Partner gives the requested support

Redirect

  1. Describe something you’re struggling with
  2. Partner starts giving support of the type of their choice
  3. Wait for them to pause, then say for example, “I appreciate your offer to wash my dishes for me, but what I really need right now is a hug.”
  4. Partner gives the requested support

Self support

  1. What you’re struggling with
  2. Why it’s hard and why it’s okay that you’re struggling
  3. What progress you’ve already made

Listening and reflection

  1. Talk about anything you want for 5 minutes. Partner listens and can’t say anything.
  2. Partner attempts to summarize and reflect back in ~30 seconds. This can include nonverbal communication such as “You felt horrible about this,” eg., from their tone of voice, facial expression, or body language. Try to avoid repeating anything verbatim.
  3. You correct any miscommunication or inaccuracy from #2.
  4. Repeat steps 2 & 3 until everyone agrees.

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