I had the privilege of meeting Alex Petty at the GLAE (Global Luminary Activation Experience) event in France a few weeks ago. Alex made a deep impression on me. “To be an Alex” in somebody’s life means that you are present with an open heart and open ears – and your mouth shut. Alex was there for his friend, Rob, when he desperately needed it and, fortunately, was able to ask for help. Men are not very good at asking for help when they are depressed and suicidal. Perhaps more suicides could be prevented if more “Alexes” were available at the right time and place?
Alex posted the text below on Facebook, and I will let it speak for itself. Thank you for being you, Alex ❤️.
Are you ready to be an Alex in somebody else’s life??
With love ❤️
“Following on from the wonderful day at the Glae event, I thought I’d share some thoughts on how to be an Alex… What did I do? What does it take?
I recently asked Rob what it was that he saw in me that triggered the feeling that he could open up to me. Below is a synopsis of the key points. I hope this insight will help someone else be an Alex to someone who needs them.
It’s about building trust & empathy.
Although it may seem counterintuitive, shut up & listen. They don’t need telling!
They need someone they feel will understand and not be judgemental.
Even if you’ve been through it; it’s not your story! It’s theirs and they have their own fears and issues.
It’s not any one big thing, It’s all the little character traits and behaviours that make for an Alex.
It’s about them rather than you – they are not being selfish, their problems can seem so big to them, that they only see themselves.
Sometimes it really is just about being there when they need to talk.
Be a true friend… Integrity is key.
Share the burden of the pain but don’t wear it… don’t try to steal someone else’s pain.
Ask questions in the positive, don’t say.. it’ll be ok… you don’t know!
Don’t expect anything in return… it’s not a transactional relationship.
Man hugs are good too.
Be humble about what you’ve done…
Remember; it’s an honour and a privilege to be allowed into someone’s life to such a personal level.
Reach out and touch a heart today ❤️”